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Moussaoui trial races towards climax


ALEXANDRIA, Mar 28 (AFP): The death penalty trial of Zacarias Moussaoui is racing towards a climax, after a stunning day of testimony in which the Al-Qaeda operative said Osama bin Laden ordered him to fly a fifth hijacked jet at the White House on September 11, 2001.
Moussaoui testified Monday that British "shoe-bomber" Richard Reid was to join him in the hijacking, and said he had lied about his involvement while in jail in August 2001, to allow the attacks to go ahead -- confirming the central plank of the prosecution's case for his execution.
Defence lawyer Gerald Zerkin asked Moussaoui: "Before your arrest, were you scheduled to be a pilot in the operation on September 11?"
"Yes," said Moussaoui.
"I was supposed to pilot a plane to hit the White House," Moussaoui added in his first public claim that he was part of the same plot as the other 19 hijackers which killed nearly 3,000 people.