Terrorism | Homeland Security Newswire

  • Syria

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu set out three specific demands regarding Syria when he met Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin on Wednesday. The three specific demands were the withdrawal of Iranian and Hezbollah forces from the border with Israel; the removal of all Iranian long-range missiles in Syria; and that Syrian civilians must not be attacked in the zone near the Israeli border.

  • Bioterrorism

    Soligenix, Inc., a late-stage biopharmaceutical company, announced that it has received notice of allowance for European and Canadian patent applications further extending protection around ThermoVax  including coverage of the company’s ricin toxin vaccine, RiVax. RiVax potentially would be added to the Strategic National Stockpile and dispensed in the event of a terrorist attack.

  • Terrorism

    German prosecutors have charged an Iranian diplomat with activity as a foreign agent and conspiracy to commit murder. Prosecutors said their investigation would not hinder Belgium’s extradition request for the suspect. The Vienna-based diplomat Assadollah Assadi is suspected of contracting a couple in Belgium to carry out any attack on an annual Paris meeting of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an exiled umbrella organization representing a variety of Iranian opposition groups.

  • Hate groups

    White supremacist groups continued to escalate their propaganda campaign targeting U.S. college campuses, with incidents increasing by 77 percent during the 2017-2018 academic year, according to new data released today by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). “The alt-right segment of the white supremacist movement remains a driving force behind this activity,” says the ADL’s Center on Extremism.

  • Chemical weapons

    Earlier this week, in the town of Salisbury, England, two people were poisoned accidentally by traces of the nerve agent Novichok, which Russian intelligence operatives used on 4 March 2018 in an attempt to assassinate former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal, along with his daughter Yulia. Alastair Hay’s article was written on 20 March 2018. Why do these lethal chemical agents exist at all?

  • Nuclear safety

    Greenpeace France said Tuesday it had flown the drone – remotely piloted by one of its activists – over Bugey nuclear plant near Lyon, France. The pilot then crashed the Superman-shaped drone against the wall of the facility’s spent-fuel pool building. This is not the first stunt by the environmental group at a French nuclear plant. The groups says it aims to expose the vulnerabilities of nuclear plants to terrorist attacks and accidents.

  • Countering kite terrorism

    In the past three months, hundreds of fire kites and flaming helium balloons – some with explosives attached – have been launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel, causing hundreds of fires, often several a day, that have burned thousands of acres (nearly seven square miles of land) on the Israeli side of the border. More than half of that land has been in nature reserves. Israeli researchers have developed two new technologies to fight the kite and balloon attacks.

  • Active shooter

    Most of the casualties in an active shooter attack are killed or injured in the first three minutes. On average, responders arrive and engage the attackers in 4–11 minutes. Intrusion Technologies says that the its AIMS platform, using Louroe’s Digifact-A microphone, detects and activates 360° protective systems in less than four seconds, stopping the would-be assailant before tragedy strikes.

  • Syria

    Israel has transferred tons of aid to thousands of refugees escaping cities in southwestern Syria that have been bombed by the Assad regime and its Russian allies in recent weeks. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, some 120,000 people have fled the Deraa region with tens of thousands escaping to Syria’s border with Jordan and thousands of others heading to the border with Israel.

  • Terrorism

    The United States is withholding $2 million in promised funding for the United Nations Counterterrorism Office in the latest move by the White House to push for reform of the world body, media reports say. The funding cut was made over a decision by the UN counterterrorism chief, a former Russian diplomat, to close part of a conference the office is holding this week to nongovernmental interest groups, media quoted U.S. officials and UN diplomats as saying.

  • Hate crimes

    We have collected new police data from 2017, ahead of the FBI totals, which cover crimes only up to 2016, and performed the first analysis of that year’s hate crimes, with a particular emphasis on the 10 largest U.S. cities. Our investigation found that hate crime totals for the 10 largest cities rose for four straight years to the highest level in a decade. Within these data are intriguing signs about the timing and direction of this bigotry. We may also be on the threshold of a new era in crime: Russia’s broad interference in the 2016 U.S. election is well documented – but what is also notable about Russian interference was their focus on sowing racial discord. There appears to be a correlation between the rise in targeted racially divisive social media ads and a near contemporaneous rise in hate crime.

  • Drones vs. balloons

    Israel’s famed military prowess has come up against a decidedly low-tech adversary, the humble party balloon, and found itself thwarted. Over the past few weeks, the residents of the Gaza Strip have let loose a barrage of colorful kites with burning tails as well as festive balloons, sometimes condoms, with fuel-soaked strips of cloth. They land inside Israeli territory, often starting serious fires. Israel has now deployed a system to track balloons and kites carrying burning material across the border.

  • Bioterrorism

    German police investigators have found more than 3,000 castor bean seeds in the Cologne apartment of a 29-year old Tunisian, who was arrested last week for making a biological weapon. The quantity of castor seeds was much larger than initially thought. Castor beans are used in making the toxin ricin. The suspect, who is married to a German woman, had been under police surveillance for contacts with Islamist extremists.

  • Syria

    Israel has not commented on background-only briefing by a senior U.S. official, who said that Israeli air-strike early Monday morning killed 52 Assad regime-allied troops eastern Syria. What is notable about the attack is its location — the town of al Hari in Deir Ezzor, near the border with Iraq, hundreds of miles from Israel – and the fact that among those killed were 22 members of Kata’ib Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed Iraqi Shia militia.

  • Designer pathogens

    Synthetic biology expands the possibilities for creating new weapons — including making existing bacteria and viruses more harmful — while decreasing the time required to engineer such organisms, concludes a new report by the National Academies of Sciences. Although some malicious applications of synthetic biology may not seem plausible right now, they could become achievable with future advances.

  • Terrorism

    Mullah Fazullah, the leader of the Pakistani Taliban, has been killed in a U.S. air strike in Afghanistan, an Afghanistan military official has said. Fazlullah was Pakistan’s most-wanted militant. He ordered the 2014 attack which killed 132 children, and the 2012 shooting of schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, who was later awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

  • Bioterrorism

    Police in the German city of Cologne on Friday searched several empty apartments in a high-rise, following the Tuesday discovery of the highly toxic substance ricin in one of the apartments. On Thursday, police charged a 29-year-old Tunisian man with producing a biological weapon and for “preparing a serious act of violence against the state.”

  • Drones

    Loa Alamos National Laboratory, in collaboration with the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), has deployed a system to counter all unauthorized unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) over its restricted airspace and an additional FAA designated “No Drone Zone.” The Counter-UAS program at Los Alamos will be the blueprint for future programs at three other NNSA sites. Systems are planned for the Pantex Plant in Texas, the Y-12 facility in Tennessee, and the National Nuclear Security Site in Nevada.

  • Terrorism

    The police in Cologne, Germany, on Tuesday arrested 29-year old Sief Allah H. for trying to build biological weapons in his apartment. He came to Germany in 2016 and had been under police surveillance for terrorist sympathies. In mid-May he ordered 1,000 castor seeds — the main ingredient for used in ricin toxin — and a coffee grinder from an online store. In June he managed to produce the toxin June.

  • Terrorism

    Official figures show that the number of terrorism-related arrests in Britain reached a record high after a series of attacks were conducted around the country last year. In the year ending 31 March, 441 people were held on suspicion of terrorism-related activity, the highest number of arrests in one year since data collection started in 2001, and an increase of 17 percent on 378 in the previous year.