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Homeland Security


December 2003 Security News

  • SAUDI/TERRORISM VOA 31 Dec 2003 -- An Islamist group with ties to the al-Qaida terror group is claiming responsibility for the explosion of a senior Saudi official's car earlier this week.
  • ASIA NEW YEAR / SECURITY VOA 31 Dec 2003 -- Security has been tightened in parts of Southeast Asia due to fears of possible terrorist attacks during the New Year's holiday. Foreign embassies are warning their citizens to take precautions and avoid large gatherings.
  • EUROPE/LETTER BOMBS VOA 31 Dec 2003 -- Police forces from various European countries have joined together to hunt for Italian anarchists suspected of waging a letter bomb campaign against European targets. The bombs are believed to have all been sent from the northern Italian city of Bologna.
  • Transcript: Announcements of Key Personnel for Military Commissions; Issuance of Military Commission Instruction No. 9 on Military Commissions Review Panel 30 Dec 2003 -- "I'm pleased to be here today to announce the selection of key personnel associated with military commissions, as well as the issuance of Military Commission Instruction No. 9 on the review panel for military commissions. The key personnel I'll be announcing today are a new appointing authority, the legal advisor to the appointing authority, and the review panel members."
  • U-S Saudi Relations after 9/11 VOA 30 Dec 2003 -- Since 9/11, U-S Saudi relations have undergone a profound re-evaluation. Although the two countries have been bound in a close, stable relationship for many years, recent events have challenged that stability. Some analysts argue that relations have deteriorated, while others disagree. Today's Dateline explores the complexity of the U-S Saudi relationship.
  • SAUDI ARABIA/TERRORISM VOA 30 Dec 2003 -- A car-bomb exploded this week in Saudi Arabia's capital despite heightened security alerts in the oil-rich kingdom. Though no one was injured in the attack, four car bombs earlier this year in Riyadh killed more than 50 people and injured more than 100 others.
  • N-Y / NEW YEAR'S SECURITY VOA 30 Dec 2003 -- Officials in New York are taking unprecedented steps to protect revelers celebrating New Year's Eve in New York's Times Square, as the United States remains on a heightened state of alert for a possible terrorist attack.
  • DoD Announces Military Commission Review Panel AFPS 30 Dec 2003 -- Trials of detainees accused of terrorist acts came a step closer today, following three moves announced by senior Pentagon officials.
  • Military Commission Legal Advisor Announced 30 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Defense announced today that Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas L. Hemingway has been named the legal advisor to the appointing authority in the Office of Military Commissions. Hemingway is responsible for providing legal advice to the appointing authority on approval of charges and referring cases to trial, questions that arise during trial and other legal matters relating to military commissions. His duties also include supervising the appointing authority legal staff.
  • Appointing Authority Decision Made 30 Dec 2003 -- Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld has decided to delegate the position of appointing authority for military commissions to John D. Altenburg, Jr.
  • Military Commission Review Panel Members to be Designated and Instruction Issued 30 Dec 2003 -- Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld has decided to designate four individuals to serve as review panel members for military commissions. Additionally, the General Counsel of the Department of Defense William J. Haynes II issued Military Commission Instruction (MCI) No. 9, Review of Military Commission Proceedings.
  • U.S.: Washington Pushes For Sky Marshals On Foreign Airliners RFE/RL 30 Dec 2003 -- From now on, passengers on foreign airlines flying to the United States may find themselves in the same cabin as an unusual fellow traveler -- an armed sky marshal. That's because the U.S. government has ordered foreign airliners to deploy the armed guards on some flights. The move is designed to thwart terror attacks, but it has prompted a mixed response.
  • UK police chief denies terror warnings are `scaremongering` IRNA 30 Dec 2003 -- Britain`s top anti-terrorism officer Peter Clarke Tuesday denied claims that warnings about terrorist attacks were `scaremongering.`
  • Family of missing al-Qaeda suspect wants information IRNA 30 Dec 2003 -- Family members of an Arab-Canadian national has filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, seeking information about the whereabouts of the two al-Qaeda suspects, who have been missing following an operation against Talibanand al-Qaeda in South Waziristan in October this year.
  • PHILIPPINES U-S TERROR VOA 30 Dec 2003 -- Immigration authorities in the Philippines are planning to deport two U-S citizens who are suspected of ties to Islamic militants linked to the al-Qaida terrorist network. Correspondent Scott Bobb reports from our Southeast Asia bureau in Bangkok that the two men are denying the charges.
  • U.S. May Request Marshals on Flights of International Carriers Washington File 30 Dec 20003 -- The United States may request international airlines to place trained sky marshals on board passenger and cargo planes flying within U.S. airspace, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge says.
  • U.S. Announces New Antiterrorist Aviation Security Requirements Washington File 30 Dec 20003 -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced directives that give it the authority to require international airlines to place armed law enforcement officers on board passenger and cargo planes flying within U.S. airspace.
  • U-S AIRLINE SECURITY VOA 29 Dec 2003 -- With the United States still under a high terrorist alert status, the U-S government is notifying other countries their airlines may be ordered to place armed sky marshals aboard flights taking off or landing in the United States. The top U-S official in charge of protecting the nation against terrorist attacks says the risk of another September 11th type of attack remains high.
  • ETHIOPIA: Horn anti-terror axis formed IRIN 29 Dec 2003 -- The leaders of Ethiopia, Sudan and Yemen formed an anti-terror axis on Monday in the fight against extremists operating in the Horn of Africa.
  • Security Council updates list of Al-Qaida operatives subject to sanctions UN News Centre 29 Dec 2003 -- A United Nations Security Council committee has added the name of an Al-Qaida operative to its list of those subject to international sanctions for their involvement with the terrorist group.
  • BRITAIN/SKY MARSHALS VOA 28 Dec 2003 -- The British government has announced that armed, undercover sky marshals will be flying on selected flights. And in an unrelated announcement, Britain warns that a terrorist attack could be in the offing in Saudi Arabia.
  • ITALY/PRODI VOA 28 Dec 2003 -- Italy launched an anti-terrorist investigation to try to find those responsible for a parcel bomb delivered to the home of European Commission President Romano Prodi. The package burst into flames when Mr. Prodi opened it, but he escaped unhurt.
  • TURKEY / TERROR VOA 26 Dec 2003 -- Turkish officials say they have broken up a cell that was behind last month's suicide bomb attacks against Jewish and British targets in Istanbul. The officials say the Istanbul-based terror cell has links with Osama Bin Laden's al-Qaida terrorist network.
  • U.S., Colombian Authorities Pursue Charges Against Cali Drug Cartel Suspects Washington File 24 Dec 2003 -- U.S. and Colombian law enforcement authorities have filed further charges in their 12-year investigation of the Cali drug cartel. A press release from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) December 22 announced the indictments of 11 individuals in Colombia in connection with new charges.
  • FRANCE / U-S FLIGHTS VOA 24 Dec 2003 -- French officials have canceled at least six Air France flights between Paris and Los Angeles (Wednesday) because of security concerns. The city's international airport is at its highest security level since the 2001 terror attacks on the East Coast.
  • TERROR ALERT "ORANGE" VOA 24 Dec 2003 -- As many Americans prepare for the Christmas holiday, they are doing so knowing that the nation's terrorism alert level is at orange, the second highest position, meaning that there is a high risk of terrorist attacks. U-S newspapers are having plenty to say about the alert and the tension it is causing for some.
  • CIVIL LIBERTIES/WAR ON TERROR VOA 24 Dec 2003 -- In today's Focus.civil liberties and the war on terror. A recent panel discussion in Washington examined the question as to how the United States government can balance the civil liberties laid out in the U-S Constitution and the Bill of Rights with the need to protect American citizens from terror attacks.
  • TURKEY / SECURITY VOA 24 Dec 2003 -- Turkish police have warned Western embassies and businesses to be on alert for further terrorist attacks during the Christmas holiday season.
  • FM: Al-Qaeda threats against Iran has no link to Saddam`s capture IRNA 24 Dec 2003 -- Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said here on Wednesday that the threats of Al-Qaeda against Iran has nothing to do with the arrest of Saddam Hussein.
  • w U.S. Entry-Exit System Aims to Enhance Security, Reduce Fraud Washington File 23 Dec 2003 -- New entry-exit procedures for visitors traveling on visas to the United States will be fast, effective, enhance security and reduce opportunities for fraud, says Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Under Secretary for Border and Transportation Security Asa Hutchinson.
  • U.S. Redesignates Jaish e-Mohammed and Lashkar e-Tayyiba Foreign Terrorist Organizations Washington File 23 Dec 2003 -- Secretary of State Colin Powell has renewed the designation of Jaish e-Mohammed and Lashkar e-Tayyiba as Foreign Terrorist Organizations, State Department spokesman Richard Boucher announced in a December 23 statement.
  • Cheney Says U.S. Faces Continuing Threat of Terrorist Attack Washington File 23 Dec 2003 -- Major progress has been made in the fight against terrorism, but there are still some who are bent on attacking the United States with even deadlier force than was used in the 9/11 attacks, Vice President Dick Cheney said December 22 to Air Force personnel at McChord Air Force Base in Takoma, Washington.
  • U.S., Saudis Ask U.N. to Designate Bosnian Terrorist Group Washington File 23 Dec 2003 -- The governments of the United States and Saudi Arabia have called on the United Nations to designate a non-governmental organization in Bosnia as a terrorist entity and add its representative to the list of persons tied to al-Qaida.
  • U-S / TERRORISM LIST VOA 23 Dec 2003 -- The United States has extended for another two years terrorist designations for two Pakistan-based Islamic extremist groups blamed for attacks in Indian Kashmir and India itself. The two groups, Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, were held responsible by India for a December 2001 attack on the Indian parliament in New Delhi.
  • No new terror warning in UK, says police chief IRNA 23 Dec 2003 -- London`s Metropolitan Police Commissioner said Tuesday urged the British public to be vigilant to potential terrorist activity over the Christmas period but denied he had been in receipt of any warnings similar to those in the US.
  • Bush Meets At White House with Homeland Security Council Washington File 22 Dec 2003 -- President Bush discussed the nation's security December 22 at a White House meeting with his Homeland Security Council -- the group of high level officials that coordinates the policies and functions of the U.S. government relating to the security of the country.
  • U-S / VISAS / SECURITY VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- The Bush administration is implementing a new security system to verify the identities of foreigners traveling to the United States with U-S visas.
  • U-S TERROR THREAT VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- The U-S official in charge of homeland security says Americans should go about their business as normal, despite Sunday's raising of the terror-alert level. The government raised the alert level after new indications that terrorists may be planning attacks to coincide with the Christmas holiday season.
  • N-Y / TERROR ALERT VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- Hundreds of extra police officers and heavily armed guards have been posted around New York City as the United States government raised the nation's terror alert to the second-highest level.
  • Heightened Security Alert Unrelated to Saddam's Capture, Bremer Says AFPS 22 Dec 2003 -- The heightened security alert in the United States is not related to the capture of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, coalition administrator Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III said here today.
  • U.S.: Courts Reject Bush Detention Policies In Two Terror Cases RFE/RL 22 Dec 2003 -- Two U.S. civilian courts have struck a blow to the Bush administration's antiterror policies, ruling that the government is violating the civil rights of so-called "enemy combatants" held in the United States and at a U.S. naval base in Cuba.
  • U.S.: Government Raises Terrorism Alert To Second-Highest Level, Citing Security Threats RFE/RL 22 Dec 2003 -- The U.S. government has raised its terror alert to its second-highest level, citing an elevated risk that militants might launch attacks in the United States during the holiday season.
  • Kharrazi confirms al-Qaeda bombing threats against Iran IRNA 22 Dec 2003 -- Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi on Monday confirmed bombing threats made by al-Qaeda against Iran to avenge what has been rumored as Tehran having given tips to capture former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.
  • YEARENDER: PAKISTAN / TERRORISM / POLITICS VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- Pakistan remained at the forefront of the war on terrorism in 2003 - capturing key members of the al-Qaida terrorist network and banning several extremist groups sympathetic to its cause. But President Pervez Musharraf, a close ally of the United States, is under fire from opposition parties for not fully returning Pakistan to democratic rule.
  • ITALY / RED BRIGADES VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- Italian police say they have arrested a suspected member of the Red Brigades terror organization. Sabina Castelfranco reports from Rome the woman is accused of renting an apartment in which 100 kilograms of explosives were found just two-days ago.
  • GULF / SUMMIT VOA 22 Dec 2003 -- Leaders of the six Gulf Arab states meeting in Kuwait approved a pact to join their efforts in fighting terror.
  • BUSH / TERROR ALERT VOA 21 Dec 2003 -- The Bush administration has raised the terror threat level in the United States to its second-highest level, warning Americans of an increased risk of attack.
  • WORLDWIDE CAUTION 21 Dec 2003 -- The U.S. Government remains deeply concerned about the security of U.S. citizens overseas. U.S. citizens are cautioned to maintain a high level of vigilance, to remain alert and to take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. We are seeing increasing indications that Al-Qaida is preparing to strike U.S. interests abroad.
  • Statement By U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge 21 Dec 2003 -- Today, The United States Government raised the national threat level from an Elevated to High risk of terrorist attack - or from Code Yellow to Code Orange. We know from experience that the increased security that is implemented when we raise the threat level, along with increased vigilance, can help disrupt or deter terrorist attacks.
  • Remarks by U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge 21 Dec 2003 -- "Today, The United States Government raised the national threat level from an Elevated to High risk of terrorist attack - or from Code Yellow to Code Orange. We know from experience that the increased security that is implemented when we raise the threat level, along with increased vigilance, can help disrupt or deter terrorist attacks. The U.S. Intelligence Community has received a substantial increase in the volume of threat related intelligence reports. These credible sources suggest the possibility of attacks against the homeland around the holiday season and beyond."
  • US Raises Terror Alert to 'High' VOA News 21 Dec 203 -- The U.S. government has raised its terror alert level from "elevated" to "high," saying the threat of terrorist attacks on U.S. soil is at its highest level since the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.
  • BRITAIN/LOCKERBIE VOA 21 Dec 2003 -- On the 15th anniversary of the Lockerbie tragedy that claimed 270 lives, British families still want answers to the basic questions behind the country's worst case of mass murder.
  • MALAYSIA/TERROR SUSPECT VOA 21 Dec 2003 -- Malaysian authorities have delayed the deportation of a suspected senior member of the regional terrorist network, Jemaah Islamiyah. Mohamad Iqbal Rahman had been scheduled to be deported to Indonesia.
  • ITALY/RED BRIGADES VOA 21 Dec 2003 -- Italian police uncovered 100 kilograms of explosives during a weekend raid on a house believed to be a hideout of the Red Brigades terrorist group. Investigators say the raid was a decisive blow to the organization.
  • Navy Detains 4 Suspected Al Qaeda AFPS 20 Dec 2003 -- Navy forces have detained four al Qaeda suspects as a result of maritime interdiction operations in the U.S. Central Command area or responsibility, Vice Adm. David Nichols said Dec. 19.
  • ENEMY COMBATANT VOA 20 Dec 2003 -- Professor Antonio F. Perez from the Law School at Catholic University, discusses the nature of the legal case of the so called "enemy combatant", Jose Padilla, and the case of a detainee in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, who has been granted a court hearing in the United States.
  • BUSH / TERROR COURTS VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- The White House is criticizing two U-S court rulings that seek to scale back the president's ability to restrict legal rights for suspected terrorists.
  • PENTAGON/DRUGS VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- U-S naval forces in the Arabian Gulf have seized nearly two metric tons of drugs on a dhow sailing what the military says is a known al-Qaida smuggling route.
  • TURKEY / ARREST VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- Turkish police confirm that a key suspect in November's suicide bomb attacks against Jewish and British targets in Istanbul was detained this week as he was entering Turkey from a neighboring country. The suspect reportedly provided further evidence pointing to the al-Qaida terrorist network's involvement in the truck bombings of two synagogues, the British consulate and a British-owned bank.
  • WTC / FREEDOM TOWER VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- New York Officials today (Friday) unveiled the new design for the Freedom Tower, planned to be the world's tallest structure on the World Trade Center site.
  • PENTAGON/DRUGS VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- U-S naval forces in the Arabian Gulf have seized nearly two metric tons of drugs on a dhow sailing what the military says is a known al-Qaida smuggling route.
  • Pak judge refuses to re-issue notice to US on ex-Guantanamo prisoner`s appeal IRNA 19 Dec 2003 -- A Pakistani judge on Thursday refused to reissue notices to US authorities in open court on appeal from a former Pakistani prisoner in Guantanamo Bay Mohammed Sagheer, in which he has sought $10.4 million in compensation, his lawyer Mudasar Ikram said.
  • SAUDI ARABIA/GUANTANAMO VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- The ruling by a U-S federal appeals court that prisoners held at the U-S military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, should be granted access to lawyers is being followed closely around the world. Lawyers representing the families of more than 100 Saudi-born detainees are trying to get more information about the prisoners.
  • INDONESIA/TERRORISTS VOA 19 Dec 2003 -- An Indonesian cleric accused of leading a regional terrorist organization has filed an appeal against a conviction for forgery and immigration violations.
  • U.N. Report Says Iraq Has Become "Readily Accessible" to al-Qaida Washington File 18 Dec 2003 -- A U.N. Security Council report says Iraq has become "readily accessible" to al-Qaida followers anxious to take up the battle against Western forces.
  • State's Armitage Applauds Saudi Arabia's Anti-terrorist Efforts Washington File 18 Dec 2003 -- Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage has applauded efforts by Saudi Arabia to crack down on terrorists, while acknowledging that Americans and American interests in Saudi Arabia are under an increased threat level.
  • TERROR SUSPECT / APPEAL VOA 18 Dec 2003 -- A federal court of appeals in New York ruled today (Thursday) that President Bush cannot detain a U-S citizen seized on U-S soil as an enemy combatant. Correspondent Jenny Falcon reports from New York that the decision involves the case of terror suspect Jose Padilla, who was arrested for allegedly plotting with al Qaida to detonate a so-called "dirty bomb."
  • U-S / LEGAL / TERROR VOA 18 Dec 2003 -- The Bush administration suffered two legal setbacks in connection with the war on terrorism Thursday.
  • Defense Counsel Assigned to Salim Ahmed Hamdan 18 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Defense announced today that Guantanamo detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan of Yemen has been assigned a military defense counsel. Although he has not been charged, Hamdan is one of six detainees President Bush determined to be subject to his military order of November 13, 2001. Military commission rules require that a detailed defense counsel be available to an accused sufficiently in advance of trial to prepare a defense.
  • SAUDI / WARNING VOA 18 Dec 2003 -- The U-S government is allowing non-essential diplomats and all diplomatic families living in Saudi Arabia to leave the country at government expense. The offer came in a travel warning issued late Wednesday.
  • U-S/SAUDI WARNING VOA 17 Dec 2003 -- The State Department has issued a new travel warning for Saudi Arabia because of what it says are "credible" threats of terrorism. Non-emergency embassy employees and dependents of U-S diplomats have been authorized to leave the country on a voluntary basis.
  • TERROR/ SENTENCES VOA 17 Dec 2003 -- The last of six Yemeni-Americans who trained at an al Qaida terrorist camp in Afghanistan just months before the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States has been sentenced to a nine-and-one half year prison term today (Wednesday)in Buffalo, New York.
  • Wassenaar Group to Tighten Export Controls on MANPADS Washington File 16 Dec 2003 -- The 33 governments that participate in the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies have agreed to tighten controls over man-portable air defense systems (MANPADS), according to a statement released December 12.
  • U.S., EU Reach Air Passenger Data Agreement Washington File 16 Dec 2003 -- The executive body of the European Union (EU) has affirmed that the protections put in place by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on the use, sharing, security, and oversight of data on airline passengers are sufficient under European law.
  • EADS and Lufthansa Technik agree to collaborate on Aircraft Self-Protection Systems EADS 15 Dec 2003 -- EADS Defence Electronics and Lufthansa Technik intend to cooperate on the integration of electronic self-protection systems in VIP aircraft endangered by man-portable missiles in the hands of terrorists. According to an announcement made by EADS on Monday, both companies on December, 4th have signed an agreement to collaborate in this field.
  • Northrop Grumman Receives Prestigious Award For Homeland Security and Homeland Defense Northrop Grumman 15 Dec 2003 -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has received the 2003 Frost & Sullivan Technology Leadership Award for Homeland Security and Homeland Defense in recognition of its roles in the Integrated Deepwater System program, and in the Immigration and Naturalization Service's (INS) Technology Enterprise Automation Management Support (TEAMS) program.
  • GILMORE COMMISSION CALLS FOR IMPROVED HOMELAND SECURITY STRATEGY RAND 15 Dec 2003 -- The United States needs an improved homeland security strategy to strengthen security in communities facing the greatest risk, improve the use of intelligence, increase the role of state and local officials, and sharpen disaster response capabilities, a federal commission said today. In a report to President Bush and the Congress, the commission-chaired by former Virginia Gov. James S. Gilmore III and known as the Gilmore Commission-says the creation of the Department of Homeland Security has resulted in improved planning and readiness. But the report concludes that the overall national homeland security strategy should be directed by a White House-level entity that "must have some clear authority over the homeland security budgets and programs throughout the federal government."
  • U-S TERROR REPORT VOA 15 Dec 2003 -- A special U-S government commission on terrorism is warning that the effort to prevent future attacks inside the United States appears to be waning.
  • CHINA / TERRORISM LIST VOA 15 Dec 2003 -- The Chinese government has come up with its own list of terrorist groups and is calling for international assistance to help fight them. Human-rights activists worry this list will be used to crackdown on Islamic minorities.
  • AFGHANISTAN / OMAR / SADDAM VOA 15 Dec 2003 -- Afghanistan is welcoming the capture of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, even as it busies itself with the landmark task of adopting a new national constitution. The Afghan government sees certain parallels between the cases of Saddam Hussein and the fugitive former Afghan leader Mullah Omar.
  • Report Finds Gaps in U.S. Efforts Against Terror Financing Washington File 13 Dec 2003 -- U.S. federal agencies should step up efforts to track and shut down the financial activities of terrorist and criminal networks, says a new report by the investigative arm of the U.S. Congress.
  • PRESS CONFERENCE BY SECURITY COUNCIL MONITORING GROUP ON AL-QAIDA, TALIBAN SANCTIONS United Nations 12 Dec 2003
  • U.S. Seeking Research Proposals on Agro-Terrorism Washington File 13 Dec 2003 -- The United States is planning to fund more research efforts to combat agro-terrorism
  • EDITORIAL: ABU SAYYAF LEADER CAPTURED VOA 12 Dec 2003 -- Philippine authorities have captured a senior leader of the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group, which has links to al-Qaida. Galib Andang [gah-leeb ahn-DAHN], also known as Commander Robot, was wounded and captured in a gun battle with Philippine security forces on Jolo Island, in the southern Philippines.
  • 91 terror suspect released, German press baffled IRNA 12 Dec 2003 -- In a spectacular twist to a Hamburg terror trial, a German court on Thursday ordered the release from custody of a Moroccan accused of assistance in the September 11 attacks.
  • GERMANY/TERROR VOA 11 Dec 2003 -- A German court has ordered the release of a Moroccan man accused of helping to plan the September 11th attacks on the United States. The decision has thrown the case against him into doubt, as well as the conviction of another Moroccan in Germany on similar charges.
  • EDITORIAL: NOVEMBER 17 CONVICTIONS VOA 11 Dec 2003 -- A court in Athens has convicted fifteen members of one of Europe's deadliest terrorist groups -- November 17. Its founder, Alexandros Yiotopoulous [yee-TOH-poo-lohs], was found guilty along with fourteen others of bombings and murders that spanned nearly thirty years, killed more than two dozen people, and wounded many others.
  • U.S. to Launch New Program to Facilitate Foreign Visitors Washington File 10 Dec 2003 -- The Bush administration will launch a new security program January 5, 2004, that will serve the dual purpose of speeding the entry of legal foreign visitors into the United States while keeping out potential security threats.
  • GERMANY/TERROR VOA 11 Dec 2003 -- A German court has ordered the release of a Moroccan man accused of helping to plan the September 11th attacks on the United States. The decision has thrown the case against him into doubt, as well as the conviction of another Moroccan in Germany on similar charges.
  • PHILIPPINES / TERRORIST CAMPS VOA 11 Dec 2003 -- A Malaysian team of observers is due to arrive Monday in the Philippines to begin monitoring a shaky ceasefire between the government and the country's largest Muslim rebel group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. Peace talks are scheduled to resume in January, but the talks are threatened by charges that the rebels are allowing a regional terrorist group to train at its camps in the southern Philippines.
  • Transdniester: Missing Missiles Raising Fears Of 'Dirty Bombs' For Sale RFE/RL 10 Dec 2003 -- International media reported this week that dozens of small missiles believed to have been modified to carry radioactive material have apparently gone missing in Moldova's breakaway Transdniester region. Reports that Transdniester, long-known as a hub for illegal weapons, could have sold what are known as "dirty bombs" to international terrorist groups are prompting officials and analysts to renew calls for a durable settlement in the region.
  • EDITORIAL: TERRORISM WILL BE STOPPED VOA 09 Dec 2003 -- It is the nature of terrorism that a small number of people can inflict terrible grief. Terrorists attacked the U.S. on September 11th, 2001. They've gone on to murder innocent people in Bali, Jakarta, Casablanca, Bombay, Mombassa, Najaf, Jerusalem, Riyadh, Baghdad, Istanbul, and other places.
  • FRANCE / ETA VOA 09 Dec 2003 -- French police arrested today (Tuesday) the suspected military head of the Basque terrorist group ETA along with three alleged accomplices.
  • GUANTANAMO: WILL SUPREME COURT OPEN "BREACH IN GUANTANAMO WALL"? US Dept. of State IIP, Foreign media Reaction 08 Dec 2003
  • U-S/IRAQ/AL-QAIDA VOA 08 Dec 2003 -- The Bush administration renewed its call on Iran Monday to hand over, either to the United States or their countries of origin, members of al-Qaida it has in custody. But the State Department denied suggestions the United States has offered to exchange Iraqi-based Iranian opposition figures for members of the Osama bin Laden terrorist group.
  • OKLAHOMA FEDERAL BUILDING VOA 08 Dec 2003 -- In Oklahoma City, a new federal building opened Monday on the opposite corner from where the Alfred P. Murrah building stood before it was destroyed by a truck bomb on April 19, 1995. The new building is considered one of the most secure structures in the nation.
  • PHILIPPINES / TERROR CAPTURE VOA 08 Dec 2003 -- The Philippine military says it has captured a senior leader of the Abu Sayyaf kidnap gang with links to international terrorist networks.
  • GREECE / TERROR VOA 08 Dec 2003 -- A Greek anti-terrorism court has convicted 15 members of a shadowy radical Marxist group, including its leader and chief gunman, for their role in a spree of murders and other crimes that spanned nearly three decades.
  • INDONESIA/TERROR VOA 07 Dec 2003 -- A senior Indonesian official has warned that terrorists are planning new attacks in the next few months. A few days ago the State Department issued its own warning of increased threats to foreigners in Indonesia.
  • Ridge Says Cyber Security Is Critical to U.S. Infrastructure Washington File 05 Dec 2003 -- Computer networks are essential to America's well being, says Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, and for that reason those networks and the infrastructures they support present an attractive target for terrorists.
  • U.S.: Critics Of Guantanamo Detention Say Policy Shift Late But Welcome RFE/RL 05 Dec 2003 -- In the past week, there has been much activity surrounding the more than 600 suspected Taliban and Al-Qaeda fighters who have been held without access to lawyers at the U.S. naval base at Cuba's Guantanamo Bay for nearly two years. First, the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush has decided to free at least 100 of the prisoners, and now one of the captives is being allowed to consult with an attorney. Critics of the detention program say it is about time Bush began changing a policy they call both unfair and unlawful.
  • EDITORIAL: UNITED NATIONS ON AL-QAIDA VOA 05 Dec 2003 -- The United Nations counter-terrorism committee has reported that "the risk of al-Qaida acquiring and using weapons of mass destruction. . . continues to grow." The U-N committee warns that al-Qaida terrorists are determined to launch chemical or biological weapons attacks and kill thousands of people. "The only restraint they are facing," says the report, "is the technical complexity to operate them properly and effectively."
  • PENTAGON/GUANTANAMO VOA 04 Dec 2003 -- A U-S military lawyer will travel to the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention center in Cuba within days to meet an Australian suspect, the first to be assigned a military defense counsel.
  • Legal Scholars Debate Patriot Act's Treatment of Foreign Nationals Washington File 04 Dec 2003 -- The treatment of foreign nationals under the USA Patriot Act was the primary topic on the agenda as the principal architect of the document, Viet Dinh, squared off to debate one of the Act's chief critics, David Cole, at a Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) forum in Washington December 2.
  • Soft Walls Technology Fights Terrorism VOA 04 Dec 2003 -- Some day soon, any terrorist who tries to use an airliner in an attack will find himself holding a useless weapon. At least that's the goal of a handful of inventors who are trying to work out a high-tech shield against hijackers.
  • U.S.: Washington Shifts Immigration Policy Criticized By Arab, Muslim Advocates RFE/RL 04 Dec 2003 -- The United States tightened its borders following the events of 11 September 2001. Because all of the hijackers involved in the terrorist attacks were suspected Arab members of the fundamentalist Muslim network Al-Qaeda, all men trying to enter the United States from countries with suspected ties to Al-Qaeda have been required to register with the government. That program -- which came under criticism from rights groups -- now will be replaced by a broader system that will monitor visitors of all backgrounds.
  • U.K.: Raids Net 23 Terror Suspects As Citizens Endure Life Under High Alert RFE/RL 04 Dec 2003 -- British police have arrested 23 terrorist suspects over the past week. One of them is a British man suspected of links to convicted "shoe bomber" Richard Reid who appeared in court in London today to face explosives and conspiracy charges. Meanwhile, Britain remains on the second-highest alert against possible terrorist attacks.
  • Germany crushes "terror cell": official IRNA 03 Dec 2003 -- The head of Germany`s Federal Crime Office on Thursday warned against serious threat of "Ansar al-Islam" in Germany, DPA reported.
  • U.S. on the Lookout for Powerful Mexican Drug Lord Washington File 03 Dec 2003 -- The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) plans to offer a reward to anyone who has information that leads to the capture and arrest of a Mexican drug trafficker, who has been plying his illegal trade for more than three decades.
  • U.S. Expands Container Security Initiative to South Africa Washington File 03 Dec 2003 --South Africa has become the first African country to join a U.S. anti-terrorism initiative designed to secure cargo containers, the U.S. customs agency says.
  • BRITAIN/TERRORISM VOA 04 Dec 2003 -- A London court has denied bail to a terrorist suspect whom police have linked to convicted "shoe bomber" Richard Reid.
  • TERROR / SENTENCING VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- A Yemeni-American man who attended an al-Qaida training camp and met with terrorist leader Osama Bin Laden before the September 11th terrorist attacks has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.
  • DoD Assigns Legal Counsel for Guantanamo Detainee 30 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Defense announced today that Australian detainee David Hicks has been assigned a military defense counsel. Although he has not been charged, Hicks is one of six detainees President Bush determined to be subject to his Military Order of November 13, 2001. Military commission rules require that a Detailed Defense Counsel be available to an Accused sufficiently in advance of trial to prepare a defense.
  • KENYA/TERRORISM VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- Kenyan officials are downplaying the danger of a terrorist attack against two major hotels in Kenya's capital, Nairobi. But Kenyan security forces have been put on high alert.
  • MOUSSAOUI APPEAL VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- Lawyers for the U-S government and for terrorism suspect Zacarias Moussaoui made arguments before a federal appeals court in Virginia Wednesday. At issue is whether Mr. Moussaoui has the right to call other al-Qaida captives as witnesses in his conspiracy trial.
  • GUANTANAMO PRISONERS VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- Word that at least 100 of the prisoners from the Afghan war jailed at the Guantanamo naval base are being released to their home nations is being well received in the U-S press.
  • THAILAND / DRUGS VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- The Thai government says its 10-month war on drugs has been a success - with tens of thousands of dealers and pushers off the streets and hundreds of thousands of addicts seeking treatment. But the anti-drug campaign remains controversial and its long-tern effectiveness is in question.
  • THAI DRUG WAR VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- Thailand's prime minister has declared victory in a 10-month campaign to eradicate illegal drugs. Many critics question just how successful the campaign was.
  • KENYA/TERRORISM VOA 03 Dec 2003 -- Kenyan officials are downplaying the reliability of anonymous tips that indicated two major hotels in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, might be bombed by terrorists. But Kenyan security forces have been put on high alert.
  • U.S. Terminates Re-registration Requirements for Visitors Washington File 02 Dec 2003 -- Effective December 2 the Bush administration terminated its mandatory re-registration requirements under the National Security Entry/Exit Registration System (NSEERS), says the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Spokespersons for Arab-American groups welcomed the announcement.
  • UIGHURS / GUANTANAMO VOA 02 Dec 2003 -- U-S authorities reportedly may release more than 100 terrorist suspects being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. But human rights activists say they are concerned that minority Uighur (wee-grr) Muslim detainees from China will face continued persecution if they are returned to their home country.
  • DoD Announces Detainee Allowed Access to Lawyer 02 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Defense announced today that Yaser Esam Hamdi, an enemy combatant detained at the Charleston Consolidated Naval Brig in Charleston, S.C., will be allowed access to a lawyer subject to appropriate security restrictions. Arrangements for that access will be developed over the next few days.
  • Global Terrorism VOA 02 Dec 2003 -- Everyone is aware of terrorism, but there is far less certainty about what it actually is and how it should be fought. Opinions are as varied as the terrorist acts themselves.
  • U-S IMMIGRATION RULES VOA 02 Dec 2003 -- Beginning next month, everyone traveling to the United States with a U-S visa will be fingerprinted and photographed upon arrival. It's part of an expanded homeland security program intended to better monitor the half billion foreigners who legally arrive in the United States during a typical year -- and to keep out anyone who may be on a terrorist watch list.
  • BRITAIN / BLAIR VOA 02 Dec 2003 -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair says his countrymen must be as vigilant as British security forces for a possible attack by international terrorists.
  • UN: Experts Call For Toughening Sanctions Regime Against Al-Qaeda, Taliban RFE/RL 02 Dec 2003 -- A group of UN experts is calling for a new Security Council resolution toughening measures to block funding, travel, and arms for Al-Qaeda members and their associates. A new report issued by the group says the UN risks being marginalized in efforts to combat the terror network unless it strengthens efforts to compel states to crack down on support for the movement. It says Al-Qaeda has greatly expanded its influence in the past two years.
  • U.S. Suspends Re-Registration Requirement for Visitors to U.S. Washington File 02 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Homeland Security has announced that it will suspend the formal requirement that visitors to the United States re-register in the National Security Entry/Exit Registration System.
  • U.S. Changes National Security Entry/Exit Registration System Washington File 02 Dec 2003 -- The Department of Homeland Security December 1 announced that it is suspending requirements that visitors to the United States re-register under the National Security Entry/Exit Registration System (NSEERS).
  • U-N/AL QAIDA VOA 01 Dec 2003 -- United Nations monitors say al-Qaida is stepping up attempts to acquire weapons of mass destruction. Experts are painting a bleak picture of efforts to clamp down on the terrorist network.
  • INDONESIA TERROR VOA 02 Dec 2003 -- Pakistan is deporting to Indonesia six students detained by Pakistani authorities on suspicion of terrorism. Their return to Indonesia raises difficult questions for the authorities.
  • SUPREME COURT / FOREIGN ABDUCTIONS VOA 01 Dec 2003 -- The U-S Supreme Court has decided to review whether American law enforcement agents can legally abduct people from other countries wanted for crimes in the United States. The ruling could have a direct impact on the war on terrorism.
  • Al-Qaida's influence continues to spread, Security Council panel says UN News Centre 01 Dec 2003 -- Al-Qaida's ideology continues to spread, especially in Iraq, raising the fear of more terrorist attacks, according to the second report issued by the monitoring group of the Security Council committee overseeing sanctions against Al-Qaida and the Taliban.
  • PENTAGON / GUANTANAMO VOA 01 Dec 2003 -- The Pentagon says a process is under way that could see more al-Qaida and Taleban detainees released from the special U-S detention center for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.
  • UK may intern terror suspects without trial, says London mayor IRNA 01 Dec 2003 -- London Mayor Ken Livingstone controversially suggested Monday for the first time that new terrorist suspects may be interned in the UK without trial when claiming that police and security services had foiled four attempted attacks in the capital.
  • PRESS BRIEFING BY CHAIRMAN OF SECURITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE ON SANCTIONS ON AL QAEDA, TALIBAN United Nations 01 Dec 2003
  • INDONESIA/BASHIR VOA 01 Dec 2003 -- An appeals court in the Indonesian capital has acquitted of treason charges the Muslim cleric accused of leading a regional terrorist organization.



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Unconventional Threat podcast - Threats Foreign and Domestic: 'In Episode One of Unconventional Threat, we identify and examine a range of threats, both foreign and domestic, that are endangering the integrity of our democracy'