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Homeland Security

Thai authorities detain two Lebanese terror suspects

RIA Novosti

16:54 13/01/2012 MOSCOW, January 13 (RIA Novosti) - Thai authorities on Friday arrested two Lebanese nationals after the United States warned that terrorists may be plotting attacks in Bangkok, the Thai newspaper The Nation reported.

Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung said that Thailand, in cooperation with the United States, found out that the two people entered the country’s territory recently and have been under watch by the Thai side since.

Chalerm said an investigation was underway. He identified the two as members of Hezbollah, a Shi’a Muslim militant group based in Lebanon, but declined to speculate why the suspects wanted to attack Bangkok.

The deputy premier’s statement came a few hours after the U.S. Embassy in Thailand alerted U.S. citizens that terrorists may be planning to conduct attacks in tourist areas in Bangkok in the near future.

“U.S. citizens are urged to exercise caution when visiting public areas where large groups of Western tourists gather in Bangkok,” the embassy said in an emergency message.

“U.S. citizens are encouraged to maintain a heightened awareness when out in public,” it said, adding that U.S. nationals should be “alert for unattended packages in crowded places and report any suspicious behavior to the nearest law enforcement personnel.”

The embassy also urged Americans to “keep a low profile in public areas, particularly areas frequented by foreign tourists.”

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