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CBS News By Peter Martinez CBS/AP BRUSSELS -- Soldiers shot a suspect after a small explosion at the central Brussels train station, a spokeswoman for the city prosecutor's office said on Tuesday evening. Noboy else seemed to be injured and the damage was limited, Ine Van Wymersch told VRT network. It was not clear if the suspect survived. Photos posted on social media showed a small fire in the station. National newspaper La Libre Belgique quoted the Brussels prosecutor's office as saying the suspect was wearing a backpack and an explosive belt. Brussels police said via Twitter that there was "an incident with an individual at the station. The situation is under control." Grand Place, a major tourist site in the Belgian capital, was evacuated along with the station about 200 meters -- 656 feet away -- the AP reports. They asked the public to follow police instructions. Belgium's Crisis Center,...
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Evening Standard by Jonathan Mitchell Counter-terror police have launched an investigation after a man was Tasered outside Parliament when he allegedly reached for a knife.Armed officers arrested a 30-year-old man outside the gates to the Palace of Westminster on Friday morning, after passers-by spotted the man and began shouting "knife, knife, knife".Although the Met Police has not declared the arrest as a terrorist incident, the force said it was "open minded as to whether terrorism was a motive".The bearded suspect, aged in his 30s, was arrested on suspicion of possession of a knife after being approached by armed officers. The arrest happened just yards from the spot where PC Keith Palmer was stabbed to death in the Westminster terror attack in March.Security has been heightened across the capital after string of terrorist attacks this year.Earlier this month, three terrorists killed eight people when they mowed down pedestrians on London Bridge...

Facebook using AI to combat terrorism

Posted by on in Terrorism
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Sky News Australia Artificial intelligence is being deployed by Facebook in an effort to stop terrorists from using its website.The social media company said in a blog post that it will use AI to find and remove terrorist content before other users see it.The technology is the same as that used to block child pornography on the website but, as AI and algorithms are not yet as good as people at understanding the nuances of content and language, the website still needs human reviewers as well.One of the techniques used is image matching - comparing photos and videos uploaded by users with known terrorist images or videos.Facebook is also working on 'text-based signals' from material that has already been removed. These signals will be fed into a machine-learning system and that machine will, over time, be able to detect similar posts.The move comes after repeated calls from authorities for social...
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Evening Standard by Tess de la Mare, Alexander Britton, Jason Collie One man was killed and 10 others injured after a van was driven into worshippers near Finsbury Park mosque in a suspected terrorist attack.Dozens of people had just finished prayers at the mosque when the vehicle crashed into pedestrians in Seven Sisters Road at about 12.15am on Monday.One man has been arrested and the Metropolitan Police has confirmed that one man has died and that Counter Terrorism officers are investigating the attack.Witnesses said people were also attacked by a knife-wielding man but the Met said there had been no reports of anyone suffering stab wounds.Prime Minister Theresa May said it was being treated as "a potential terrorist attack" and that she would hold a Cobra committee emergency meeting later on Monday.The nature of the attack drew immediate parallels with the London Bridge atrocity two weeks ago, in which eight...
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Fox News Suspected jihadists in the West African country of Mali attacked a luxury resort popular with foreigners on the outskirts of the country's capital Sunday, killing at least two people. The assault continued into the evening and there were believed to be hostages in the luxury Campement de Kangaba resort area near Bamako Sunday. Residents living near the resort said that shots were fired and smoke could be seen in the air.   "I heard gunfire coming from the camp and I saw people running out of the tourist site," said Modibo Diarra, who lives nearby. "I learned that it was a terrorist attack." Malian soldiers succeeded in entering the site, according to Commandant Modibo Traore, a spokesman for the Malian special forces in the former French colony. "The operation is ongoing and we estimate that there are between three and four assailants," he said. As night fell, witnesses saw...
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by Neeraj Chauhan | Times of India NEW DELHI: On Sunday, India will take on Pakistan in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy in London. The same day, in Valencia in Spain, it will be a contest of a different sort as the government sets about exposing Pakistan for "hoodwinking" the international community on "terror funding" and not taking any action against Jamaat-ud-Dawa and its arms when the plenary meet of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the international terror financing watchdog, begins.An Indian delegation headed by Enforcement Directorate chief Karnal Singh will brief the forum, where 198 member countries and the UN, IMF and World Bank will discuss ways to counter terror financing.India, according to top government sources, has prepared a detailed report on Pakistan which names the country for supporting the funding activities of banned outfits like JuD, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and others, operating freely from Pakistani soil.Not...
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by HALEY NELSON - ABC 6 Ohio Homeland Security and the Department of Public Safety conducted one of their biggest drills to date. The goal was to train law enforcement to take on growing threats to our community."In its scope and nature and scale it is one of the larger ones," said Ohio Homeland Security Director Rick Zwayer.Teams from Ohio State Highway Patrol and more dealt with protesters. It's all part of a simulation. The fake protesters locked themselves to a sleeping dragon. It's a tool used often by protesters, making it difficult for officers to remove them.ADVERTISINGThe Department of Public Safety coordinated the training.There was another simulated crime scene at the Ohio Fairgrounds. Teams practiced their responses in the case of a fellow officer being shot."The tactics and means in which terrorists conduct their attacks have changed. We have to be able to adapt and change as well," said...
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The Telegraphby Ben Farmer - Defense Correspondent Police arrested a record number of terrorist suspects last year, as fewer would-be Islamic State group jihadists head to the Middle East and instead decide to stay at home to plot attacks.The number of arrests for terrorism-related offenses in Great Britain jumped by nearly a fifth, with 304 people held in the year until the end of March.The figure was the highest since records began in 2001 and three quarters of the arrests were for international terrorism, almost all linked to Islamist extremism. But the number of right-wing extremists arrested also rose to a record high after a neo-Nazi group called National Action in December became the first extreme Right-wing group to be banned as a terrorist organisation.The surge in far-right extremism led to a jump in the number of white people being arrested, up from 68 to 113.The Home Office released the...
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Forbes by Lee Mathews It's not often that the FBI and Department of Homeland Security call out a nation behind a team of state-sponsored hackers for their activities. When there's a looming threat of further attacks by such a group, however, the public deserves a candid warning.You may have heard about the Lazarus Group before. Its name has been in the news several times in recent years, most notably in 2014 when it's believed the Group orchestrated a year-long hack of Sony Pictures. While the Group  most frequently hacks South Korean targets, it now appears that Lazarus has been launching attacks around the globe since as far back as 2009.In a US-CERT alert issued this week, the FBI and DHS detailed the existence of malware dubbed DeltaCharlie. Its purpose: to manage a massive botnet which is capable of launching crippling DDoS attacks. According to the alert, the Lazarus Group has...

Political Terrorism

Posted by on in Terrorism
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Call the Alexandria baseball shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise and others what it is. U.S. NewsBy Peter Roff | Contributing Editor for OpinionThe relative peace and quiet of an Alexandria, Virginia ballfield on a steamy but otherwise unremarkable morning was shattered by gunfire Wednesday when an Illinois man allegedly opened fire on a group of Republican lawmakers practicing for an upcoming charity baseball game.The shooter, now deceased, has been identified as 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders supporter from Belleville, Ill. His social media accounts reveal him as someone intensely political and alarmed at the conservative direction the country has taken since the last election.If his motivation was political, if he was attempting to strike a blow for his cause by taking out as many Republican lawmakers at one time as possible, it would not be all that surprising. The self-described anti-Trump resistance has already stooped to violence before....
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Fox News The shooting Wednesday at a congressional baseball practice prompted swift calls to ratchet down the country’s heated political rhetoric, with one Republican congressman who was at the scene saying the “hateful rhetoric” on both sides has to stop.Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill., specifically blamed “political rhetorical terrorism” – heated rhetoric on social media and in the news – for Wednesday’s shooting, in which House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and several others were wounded.“This is the result, I believe, of political rhetorical terrorism. That has to stop,” he told “America’s Newsroom.” According to a well-placed source, the suspect has been identified as Illinois resident James T. Hodgkinson. Davis was at bat when the shooter opened fire in Alexandria, Va. He credited Scalise’s security detail with helping prevent the attack from being a lot worse, calling the officers “true heroes.”But he said the country needs to take ratchet down the political...
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Sydney Morning Heraldby Clive Williams In the wake of terrorist attacks in France and England, both France and Britain are expected to toughen counterterrorism measures to try to contain the threat. France has lost 250 people to terrorist attacks since 2012, while Britain has suffered 35 victim deaths this year.In France, President Emmanual Macron and his security council approved a draft bill to put to cabinet on June 21 that will make existing emergency powers permanent and enable the Interior Ministry – which runs the police and security service – to order house arrests and electronic bracelets for anyone regarded as a security threat. House arrest will be renewable every three months. (At the moment, under emergency powers, about 1000 people of interest are under house arrest.) The draft bill also gives the police permanent powers to search property without judicial oversight and to close places of worship. Public gatherings...

Hamas and Hezbollah Flags on London Streets?

Posted by on in Terrorism
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Clarion Project By Elliot Friedland The annual Al Quds day parade in London, which marches against the State of Israel, will go ahead this year despite a campaign mounted against it. In previous years demonstrators have waved Hamas and Hezbollah flags at the march. Last year there were even placards saying “We Are All Hezbollah.”Hezbollah is an Iranian backed Lebanese militia group founded to fight Israel during the Lebanese civil war but now fighting on the regime side in the Syrian Civil War. Hamas is the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestinian affiliate and is now the governing body of the Gaza strip.Both organizations are listed as terrorist organizations in the UK, however the political wing of Hezbollah is not listed as a terrorist organization.    “We have long argued that it is deeply unacceptable for Hezbollah flags to be flown here in the UK, especially on this annual outpouring of hatred” a spokesman...
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by Ruthie Blum - Gatestone Institute*As soon as the statue of "Lady Justice," blindfolded and holding a scale, was erected in the Bangladeshi capital, fundamentalist groups began to protest, on the grounds that the piece of art was "un-Islamic" and constituted idol-worship.*Since 2013, dozens of people have been slaughtered, many with machetes. Although ISIS claimed responsibility for many of the brutal killings, no formal investigation into the murders was ever launched.*Instead, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina took the opportunity to arrest more than 11,000 people, only 145 of whom were Islamist terrorists. The rest were charged with crimes such as theft and drug-dealing, indicating that it might have been part of Hasina's crackdown on critics since her election in 2008.The arrest on May 26 of 140 secular activists in Bangladesh is the latest in a string of incidents indicating a disturbing shift towards Islamic fundamentalism in the East Asian parliamentary democracy.The activists...
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Law Street By James LevinsonSweeping changes are likely to come in Britain’s policy toward terrorism and extremism after Prime Minister Theresa May declared that “enough is enough” during a speech outside of 10 Downing Street on Sunday. The speech was prompted after another attack on Saturday night at the London Bridge where a white van struck pedestrians in a coordinated attack that killed seven and injured dozens that was later claimed by ISIS.This is the third major attack that has occurred in Britain this year including a terror attack on Westminister Bridge that occurred in March and the bombing at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester in May.In her speech, May responded with the introduction of a new four-point plan toward combating the “new trend” of ideological extremism. While the plan presented was broad and skimmed on policy specifics that might be introduced, it was indicative of the direction of...
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By SYLVIE CORBET Associated Press Minneapolis Star Tribune PARIS — French President Emmanuel Macron held a special meeting Wednesday to create a new counterterrorism unit to improve intelligence-sharing and elaborate security strategies, one day after a man attacked a police officer in front of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.The "national center of counterterrorism" was formally presented Wednesday during a defense council at the Elysee palace, in the presence of government members and top security officials.The unit, composed of about 20 people, will supervise all counterterrorism efforts.It will be based at the Elysee, will operate 24 hours a day and will act directly under the president's authority — an unprecedented situation in the country, where some observers have denounced a lack of coordination between foreign and domestic intelligence services.A top official at the French presidency said the new unit will notably determine strategies to fight against radicalization on the internet and...
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PM’s call reflects concerns over increase in tempo of attacks as fears grow that police and security services missed opportunities to stop attacks by Ewen MacAskill, Rowena Mason and Vikram Dodd - The GuardianThe British domestic intelligence agency MI5 is to take a hard look at its counter-terrorism operations in the wake of the London Bridge attack after Theresa May took the unusual step of calling publicly for a review.The prime minister’s decision to go public adds to the pressure MI5 is under as further questions emerge over whether it did enough to stop the attack.May’s call reflects concern over a sudden increase in the tempo of attacks and plots. There is also worry over whether the police and security services missed opportunities, including a disclosure from Italian intelligence that it had flagged up to its British counterparts worries about the third attacker, the Moroccan-Italian Youssef Zaghba. As well as...
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‘Worst-case scenario is your staff, patients and visitors could be killed or injured,’ guide statesby Narjas Zatat - Independent.co.uk New guidance issued by a police counter-terror unit has warned hospitals and GP surgeries that they may be targets for attacks.The National Counter Terrorism Security Office released an updated ‘Crowded Places Guidance’ document, which tells medical professionals: “It is possible that your surgery, for example, could be the target of a terrorist incident. This might include having to deal with a bomb threat or suspicious items left in or around the area.“The worst-case scenario is your staff, patients and visitors could be killed or injured, and your premises destroyed or damaged in a ‘no warning’ multiple and co-ordinated terrorist attack.” Hospitals are warned that the nature of such an attack may be covert, “through interference with vital information” or “enabled by an insider or someone with specialist knowledge or access to...
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IrishExaminer.com By Cormac O'KeeffeIrish Examiner ReporterA larger anti-terrorism unit, more armed gardaí on the streets, round-the-clock regional support units and specially trained garda dispatchers for terrorist and firearms incidents are all being put in place to deal with potential terror threats.The extra measures, unveiled in the wake of the London and Manchester attacks, come as the separated wife of Moroccan Rachid Redouane — who had lived in Dublin and was one of the three London attackers — issued a statement saying she was “deeply shocked, saddened and numbed” by his actions.British woman Charisse O’Leary, who married Redouane in Dublin in November 2012, said they had split up six months ago and that she would have to try and explain to their daughter “why her father did what he did”.She said: “I wish to make it absolutely clear, so there can be no doubt, I condemn his actions and do not...
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DW by Shamil Shams DW: The attacks on Iran's parliament and Ayatollah Khomeini's mausoleum have been claimed by Islamic State (IS) - a Wahhabi-Sunni militant group. The attackers, however, were Iranian nationals, as claimed by officials in Tehran. Does it show that IS influence is increasing in the Shiite-majority Iran?Paulo Casaca: Iran has a long tradition of supporting terrorist groups not necessarily aligned with the Shiite sect of Islam, for instance al Qaeda, Hamas or the Taliban. Still, as it happens with other states that support jihadi groups, Iran cannot stop its own creations from turning against it. Pakistan is a good example in this case.The non-Shiite jihadi groups have already increased their activities in Iran, particularly in its Sistan-Baluchestan province. IS had repeatedly announced its intentions to start operations in Iran, and now we saw the group attacking two important sites in the country.Iranian authorities have condemned the Wednesday...