February 2019 Security News
- Rewards for Justice - Reward Offer for Information on al-Qa'ida Key Leader Hamza bin Laden US Dept. of State 28 Feb 2019 -- The U.S. Department of State's Rewards for Justice Program is offering a reward of up to $1 million for information leading to the identification or location in any country of al-Qa'ida (AQ) key leader Hamza bin Laden.
- National Guard chemical troops test new deployable threat response system Army News 27 Feb 2019 -- Maryland and Delaware National Guard warfighters here are testing a new chemical and biological threat response system that can quickly deploy to contamination sites.
- US general disputes Trump's claim about military threat on southern border Press TV 27 Feb 2019 -- The top US general for homeland security says the influx of illegal immigrants and drugs across the US-Mexico border does not constitute a national emergency, despite claims by President Donald Trump.
- US House votes to revoke Trump's emergency declaration Press TV 27 Feb 2019 -- Lawmakers in the US House of Representatives have voted to revoke President Donald Trump's national emergency declaration over building a US-Mexico border wall despite veto threats by the White House.
- In Moscow Treason Trial, A Major Scandal For Russian Security Agency RFE/RL 27 Feb 2019 -- It is the biggest scandal to hit Russia's powerful Federal Security Service (FSB) in years.
- ISIS Supporter Sentenced to Almost 16 Years for Attempting to Provide Material Support to Foreign Terrorist Organization and Identity Theft US Dept. of Justice 26 Feb 2019 -- Amer Sinan Alhaggagi was sentenced today to 188 months for attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization and identity theft charges.
- Task Force: US Efforts to Battle Extremism 'Unsustainable' VOA 26 Feb 2019 -- The United States will need to significantly change its approach to fighting terrorists and extremist groups or face the prospect of more never-ending wars in the Middle East, Africa and beyond, according to a new report that is already resonating with key lawmakers.
- House Votes to Revoke Trump's Border Emergency VOA 26 Feb 2019 -- The U.S. House of Representatives voted Tuesday to revoke President Donald Trump's declaration of a national emergency to build a wall without congressional authorization along the country's southern border with Mexico.
- Report: U.S. Cyber Force Cut Internet Access To Russian 'Troll Factory' RFE/RL 26 Feb 2019 -- The Washington Post is reporting that a U.S. military agency blocked the Internet access of a Russian firm that intelligence agencies believed was trying to influence the 2018 U.S. midterm elections.
- Two Russian Cybersecurity Figures Convicted Of Treason, Sentenced To Long Prison Terms RFE/RL 26 Feb 2019 -- A Russian military court has convicted a former Federal Security Service (FSB) officer and an expert at the cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab of treason and handed them long prison terms in a case that is reportedly linked to the United States.
- Shanahan, Dunford Visit U.S.-Mexico Border DoD News 25 Feb 2019 -- Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan and Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, journeyed to Texas over the weekend to get a feel for the situation on the Southwest border.
- Former US Security Officials to Oppose Emergency Declaration VOA 25 Feb 2019 -- A group of 58 former U.S. national security officials, both Republicans and Democrats, contended Monday that President Donald Trump had "no factual basis" to declare a national emergency to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border to thwart illegal immigration.
- Turkish Man Wanted by US Set Free in Turkey VOA 24 Feb 2019 -- A Turkish citizen, wanted by the U.S. for his involvement in a terror attack that killed two U.S. military personnel in Afghanistan, has been set free by Turkish authorities following his deportation from Germany where the suspect completed an 11-year prison sentence last year.
- Trump vows veto as Democrats launch resolution to stop border emergency Press TV 23 Feb 2019 -- President Donald Trump has vowed to veto a possible resolution that aims to stop his declaration of a national emergency to build a wall along the US southern border.
- Trump Says Would Veto US Congress Bill to Block National Emergency at Border Sputnik 23 Feb 2019 -- US President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House he would veto legislation introduced in the House of Representatives aimed at blocking his national emergency declaration on the US-Mexico border.
- Sons of Joaquin Guzman Loera Aka "El Chapo" Charged with Drug Trafficking US Dept. of Justice 21 Feb 2019 -- An indictment against Joaquin Guzman Lopez and Ovidio Guzman Lopez, charging them with a conspiracy to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana for importation into the United States was unsealed last week.
- House moving 'swiftly' to end Trump's border wall emergency declaration Press TV 21 Feb 2019 -- The US House of Representatives is to introduce a resolution to block the national emergency declaration issued by President Donald Trump to raise funds for a Mexican border wall.
- Why Tajikistan Is Fighting To Bring Its Islamic State Widows Back Home RFE/RL 21 Feb 2019 -- With Islamic State (IS) fighters on the verge of defeat in their last stronghold in Syria, hundreds of foreign women and children, the family members of the militants, have ended up in refugee camps in the war-torn country's northeast.
- Pregnant, nursing women can now be given Ebola vaccine, UN health agency announces UN News 21 Feb 2019 -- Reversing an earlier decision, the World Health Organization (WHO) now recommends vaccinating pregnant and breastfeeding women against the Ebola virus.
- Pompeo: American-Born Islamic State Woman Is Not US Citizen VOA 21 Feb 2019 -- U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo contended Thursday that an American-born woman who defected to the Islamic State terrorist group is not a U.S. citizen and should not be allowed to return home from Syria because her father was a Yemeni diplomat.
- Microsoft Says Russia-Linked Hacking Group Targeted European Think Tanks, NGOs RFE/RL 20 Feb 2019 -- Software giant Microsoft says it has uncovered a series of cyberattacks by hackers linked to Russia targeting democratic institutions, think tanks and nonprofit organizations in Europe, highlighting concerns of possible interference in European Union elections in May.
- Treasury Sanctions Indian Narcotics Trafficker Jasmeet Hakimzada and His Network US Treasury 20 Feb 2019 -- Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) identified Indian national Jasmeet Hakimzada as a Significant Foreign Narcotics Trafficker pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (Kingpin Act). OFAC also designated two Indian nationals and four entities registered in India or the United Arab Emirates (UAE) that form part of the narcotics trafficking organization run by Jasmeet Hakimzada.
- Saudi Arabia to Cooperate with India on Terrorism VOA 20 Feb 2019 -- Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in New Delhi that terrorism is a common concern and his country would cooperate with India in combating terrorism and extremism.
- US Hate Groups Hit Record Number Last Year Amid Increased Violence VOA 20 Feb 2019 -- The white supremacist group Identity Evropa more than doubled the number of its chapters.
- China Faces Challenges in Containing Swine Flu Infection VOA 20 Feb 2019 -- The Year of the Pig is getting off to a rough start in China as the world's largest consumer of pork and home to half the world's pigs struggles to contain the spread of the African swine fever (ASF) virus.
- Statement from the Press Secretary The White House 20 Feb 2019 -- "Today, President Donald J. Trump released the National Strategy to Combat Terrorist Travel and the National Strategy for Aviation Security. In keeping with his promise to protect the American people and our interests, these strategies prioritize vital roles and responsibilities for departments and agencies. The strategies also establish and clarify planning and operations coordination requirements to keep terrorists from transiting our borders and enhance security in our aviation sector."
- Trump: 'Absolute Right' to Build Border Wall VOA 19 Feb 2019 -- U.S. President Donald Trump asserted Tuesday he had an "absolute right" to declare a national emergency to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border without congressional approval of funding for it.
- Coalition of 16 US States Sue Trump Administration Over Emergency Declaration Sputnik 19 Feb 2019 -- A coalition of 16 US states led by California have filed a lawsuit against the administration of US President Donald Trump over the latter's decision to declare a state of emergency in order to gain finances for building a wall on the US-Mexico border, local media reported.
- More states to join California lawsuit against Trump's emergency Press TV 18 Feb 2019 -- Several states are expected to join a California lawsuit against the Trump administration over the president's move to declare a national emergency to get the money for his border wall.
- Australia Says 'Sophisticated State Actor' Hacked Lawmakers, Parliament RFE/RL 18 Feb 2019 -- Australia says a "sophisticated state actor" was responsible for a cyberattack on Australian lawmakers earlier this month, most likely carried out by a foreign country.
- Saudi Minister: Iran Harboring al-Qaida's 'Board of Directors' VOA 18 Feb 2019 -- Saudi Arabia has accused Iran of harboring what it said was "the board of directors of al-Qaida" and rejected charges Riyadh was behind last week's suicide car bombing that killed against 27 personnel of the Iranian Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC).
- Australian Political Parties Targeted In Mass Hacking Attempt VOA 18 Feb 2019 -- Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the country's major political parties have been hit by a hack on their computer networks. The government says the systems were infiltrated by a "sophisticated state actor".
- Acting Pentagon chief not decided yet on funding border wall Press TV 17 Feb 2019 -- Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan says that no decision has been made on whether to fund a wall along the US southern border using Pentagon's budget.
- White House Defends Trump's National Emergency Declaration VOA 17 Feb 2019 -- The White House on Sunday defended President Donald Trump's declaration of a national emergency to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border to thwart illegal immigration even though he said he didn't need to do it.
- Breaking Down Community Resistance in Ebola-Affected Congo VOA 17 Feb 2019 -- A unique project is making strides in breaking down community resistance toward international efforts to contain the spread of the deadly Ebola virus in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has teamed up with the U.S.-based Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to collect, analyze and implement new strategies in "real time" to tackle the major concerns of people faced with this dreaded disease.
- Daesh's Downfall May Result in Al-Qaeda's Resurgence, MI6 Chief Warns Sputnik 16 Feb 2019 -- In light of Washington's decision to withdraw all American troops from Syria due to the "victory" over Daesh, the UK Foreign Office said that despite the US-led international coalition's successful efforts in fighting the terrorist group, it remains a threat and must be defeated.
- Trump declares national emergency to build US-Mexico border wall Press TV 15 Feb 2019 -- US President Donald Trump has declared a national emergency to bypass congressional approval and secure funding for the construction of his controversial wall on the US-Mexico border.
- DOD Statement on the President's Declaration of a National Emergency on the Southern Border DoD 15 Feb 2019 -- "The president has declared a national emergency on the southern border. The president invoked sections 12302, 284(b)(7), and 2808 of Title 10, U.S. Code, and requires the use of the armed forces to respond to this emergency through support to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in its efforts to secure the southern border."
- Remarks by President Trump on the National Security and Humanitarian Crisis on our Southern Border The White House 15 Feb 2019
- Former FBI Chief: Law Enforcement Officials Mulled Ousting Trump VOA 14 Feb 2019 -- The Trump administration is firing back at a former Federal Bureau of Investigation acting director who says top federal law enforcement officials considered invoking a constitutional amendment to remove the president after he fired then-FBI Director James Comey.
- US officials discussed if Trump could be removed from office: Ex-FBI deputy director Press TV 14 Feb 2019 -- US Justice Department officials were so concerned about President Donald Trump's fitness for office in May 2017 that they discussed whether Trump could be removed from office, according to former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
- Cyber Command Expects Lessons From 2018 Midterms to Apply in 2020 DoD News 14 Feb 2019 -- Efforts to protect the 2018 midterm elections from foreign interference are expected to be studied and reapplied to protect the November 2020 elections, the commander of U.S. Cyber Command said on Capitol Hill today.
- Trump to Declare National Emergency as He Signs Border Security Bill VOA 14 Feb 2019 -- U.S. President Donald Trump will sign legislation calling for limited barrier construction along the border with Mexico, but at the same time declare a national emergency to build more of the wall he wants to thwart illegal immigration, the White House said Thursday.
- Rights Group: IS Could Be Hiding Gold in E. Syria VOA 13 Feb 2019 -- As Islamic State faces pressure in its final stronghold in Syria's Deir el-Zour province, the group could be hiding a mountain of gold it smuggled out of other Syrian provinces and neighboring Iraq, a rights group told VOA on Wednesday.
- Trump 'Looking for Land Mines' in Proposed Border Wall Deal VOA 13 Feb 2019 -- U.S. President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he has made no decision on whether to sign proposed bipartisan legislation for limited new barrier construction along the U.S.-Mexico border in order to avert another partial government shutdown Friday over the dispute.
- Mexican drug cartel found guilty in US court, faces life in jail Press TV 13 Feb 2019 -- Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, Mexico's most notorious drug lord, has been found guilty in a US court and is to face a life sentence over charges of smuggling tons of drugs to the United States.
- Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman, Sinaloa Cartel Leader, Convicted of Running a Continuing Criminal Enterprise and Other Drug-Related Charges US Dept. of Justice 12 Feb 2019 -- Joaquin Archivaldo Guzman Loera, known by various aliases, including "El Chapo" and "El Rapido," was convicted today by a federal jury in Brooklyn, New York of being a principal operator of a continuing criminal enterprise – the Mexican organized crime syndicate known as the Sinaloa Cartel – a charge that includes 26 drug-related violations and one murder conspiracy.
- Mexico's 'El Chapo' Found Guilty in US Drug Trial VOA 12 Feb 2019 -- Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman has been convicted of drug-trafficking and related charges at a trial in New York.
- Russian Internet-Isolation Bill Advances, Despite Doubts In Duma RFE/RL 12 Feb 2019 -- Amid pointed questions about costs, intent, and feasibility, Russia's lower house of parliament has given preliminary approval to a bill that backers say is designed to ensure the operation of the Internet in the country if access to servers abroad is cut off.
- Q&A: Hurdles Ahead As Russia Surges On With 'Sovereign Internet' Plan RFE/RL 12 Feb 2019 -- Draft legislation is in the pipeline in Russia that backers say is an effort to ensure the operation of a Russian Internet if access to servers located abroad is cut off or to prevent enemies abroad from co-opting Russian readers to undermine Moscow authorities.
- Russia Mulls Disconnecting From Internet In Test Of Cyberdefenses RFE/RL 11 Feb 2019 -- Russia is planning to temporarily disconnect from the global Internet in the coming weeks as it tests its defenses against cyberattacks.
- Daesh Has Up to $300Mln in Cash Reserves for Sustaining Operations - UN Office Sputnik 11 Feb 2019 -- The Daesh terrorist group* despite territorial losses has up to $300 million in cash on hand to sustain operations, UN Counter-Terrorism Office (CTO) Under-Secretary-General Vladimir Voronkov told the Security Council on Monday.
- Despite falling attacks, ISIL terrorists remain 'global threat': UN report UN News 11 Feb 2019 -- Though attacks were down last year, a new United Nations report to the Security Council on Monday shows that ISIL is still a global threat, despite evolving into a "covert" terrorism network, with countries continuing to face challenges from the growing scourge of violent extremism.
- Shutdown Is Still 'on the Table' as Border Security Talks Hit Another Impasse Sputnik 11 Feb 2019 -- Talks between President and lawmakers have stalled as negotiators hint that they are still struggling to reach a deal to fund border security and avoid another government shutdown before the Friday deadline.
- Trump Retains Explosive Wildcard in Battle Over Border Security VOA 10 Feb 2019 -- President Donald Trump's planned trip Monday to the border city of El Paso, Texas comes days before U.S. government funding is due to lapse once again and as suspense builds over Trump's vague but persistent threat to declare a national emergency if Congress declines to pay for wall construction along the U.S.-Mexico border.
- US Facing Friday Deadline to Avert New Government Shutdown VOA 10 Feb 2019 -- The U.S. government is facing a Friday deadline for funding about a quarter of its operations, struggling to avert another shutdown after a record 35-day closure was ended last month.
- DHS Issues Waiver to Expedite Secondary Fence Replacement Project in San Diego Department of Homeland Security 08 Feb 2019 -- The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a waiver to ensure the expeditious construction and replacement of approximately 12.5 miles of secondary wall near the international border in the state of California. The waiver was published in the Federal Register on February 7, 2019.
- DHS Waives Rules to Expedite Secondary Fence Replacement in California Sputnik 08 Feb 2019 -- The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said in a press release on Friday they have issued a waiver to expedite construction of a wall on the Mexican border.
- Remarks by Vice President Pence to DHS and CBP Personnel | Baltimore, MD The White House 08 Feb 2019
- Texas Man Charged by Criminal Complaint with Conspiring to Provide Material Support to a Foreign Terrorist Organization US Dept. of Justice 08 Feb 2019 -- A Texas man was charged today with conspiring to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers of the National Security Division, U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox for the Northern District of Texas, and Special Agent in Charge Eric Jackson of the FBI's Dallas Division made the announcement.
- Lassa Fever Outbreak in West Africa Escalating Rapidly: WHO VOA 08 Feb 2019 -- The World Health Organization reports it is scaling up efforts to try to control an outbreak of Lassa fever, which is escalating at a rapid pace.
- EU plans to blacklist Saudi Arabia for failure in fighting money laundering: FT Press TV 08 Feb 2019 -- The European Commission is planning to name Saudi Arabia in a list of countries that have failed to fight against terrorist financing and money laundering, a report says.
- US Navy to Deploy Ship on Counter-Narcotics Mission in Latin America - S Command Sputnik 07 Feb 2019 -- US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) Commander Craig Faller told Congress on Thursday that SOUTHCOM will deploy a multi-mission support vessel to Latin America this year to support counter-narcotics operations there.
- Clock Ticking on Efforts to Strike US Border Deal VOA 06 Feb 2019 -- U.S. lawmakers working to avert another partial government shutdown emerged from a closed-door meeting Wednesday asserting that an agreement on border security could be reached in the coming days, but indicated that partisan differences remained on specific elements of a potential deal.
- Trump Makes Last Appeal for Wall Funding in State of Union Address VOA 05 Feb 2019 -- President Donald Trump used the State of the Union address Tuesday night to make a final push for a wall along the southern U.S. border, just days ahead of what he has warned could be another government shutdown.
- 'Bloated' But Not Adequate: Pentagon's Cyber-Defenders Unfit for Real Threats Sputnik 06 Feb 2019 -- US cyber defenders are unprepared against real-world threats due to understaffed and underfunded "Red Teams," according to a 2018 annual report published last week by the US Department of Defense's (DoD) Office of the Director of Operational Test & Evaluation (DOT&E).
- No Material Impact From Foreign Interference on 2018 Election - US DoJ Sputnik 06 Feb 2019 -- In December, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats claimed that Russia and other countries, such as Iran and China, "conducted influence activities" to promote their interests during the midterms.
- Trump Says US to Build 'Human Wall' on Mexico Border if Necessary Sputnik 06 Feb 2019 -- US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that the United States would build a "human wall" along the border with Mexico if it cannot construct a physical barrier.
- Acting Attorney General and Secretary of Homeland Security Submit Joint Report on Impact of Foreign Interference on Election and Political/Campaign Infrastructure in 2018 Elections Department of Homeland Security 05 Feb 2019 -- Acting Attorney General Matthew G. Whitaker and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen M. Nielsen submitted a joint report to President Donald J. Trump on February 4, 2019 evaluating the impact of any foreign interference on election infrastructure or the infrastructure of political organizations, including campaigns and candidates in the 2018-midterm elections.
- Acting Attorney General and Secretary of Homeland Security Submit Joint Report on Impact of Foreign Interference on Election and Political/Campaign Infrastructure in 2018 Elections US Dept. of Justice 05 Feb 2019 -- Report Concludes No Material Impact of Foreign Interference on Election or Political/Campaign Infrastructure in 2018 Elections
- Report: Foreign Meddling Had No 'Material Impact' on US Midterm Election VOA 05 Feb 2019 -- A new U.S. assessment of foreign interference in the 2018 congressional elections has concluded that outside meddling had no effect on the integrity and security of the voting systems, but the government didn't say whether foreign actors influenced the outcome of the election.
- US says no evidence foreign states impacted 2018 midterm elections Press TV 05 Feb 2019 -- Senior officials in the US government say that foreign states did not significantly influence the 2018 congressional elections, despite reports of hacking attempts leading up to the midterm elections in November.
- Piracy and high seas crime growing, becoming more sophisticated, UN Security Council told UN News 05 Feb 2019 -- International maritime crime is becoming "increasingly sophisticated" as criminal groups exploit jurisdiction and enforcement challenges on the high seas and pose "immediate danger to people's lives and safety", the UN anti-drugs and crime chief warned the Security Council on Tuesday.
- North Carolina Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Attempting and Conspiring to Provide Material Support to ISIS US Dept. of Justice 04 Feb 2019 -- Erick Jamal Hendricks, 38, of Charlotte, North Carolina, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).
- Pentagon: 3,750 more troops heading to Mexico border Press TV 04 Feb 2019 -- The United States is to deploy 3,750 more troops to its southern border with Mexico as President Donald Trump ramps up his rhetoric in favor of enhanced "security" against what he calls a migrant invasion.
- Two injured in fresh separatist attacks in UK's Northern Ireland province Press TV 02 Feb 2019 -- Police in the UK province of Northern Ireland say two men were shot and wounded in "paramilitary style attacks" which was later claimed by a group calling itself the Irish Republican Army (IRA).
- Trump Denounces Pelosi Over Border Wall Funding VOA 02 Feb 2019 -- The president of the United States has lambasted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, calling her "very bad for our country" and saying that "she doesn't mind human trafficking" because she opposes designating money for a wall at the U.S. border with Mexico.
- US Researchers Look for Long-Lasting Ebola Vaccine VOA 01 Feb 2019 -- South Sudan is vaccinating health workers against Ebola in case the virus crosses the border from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ebola has stricken more than 700 people in the DRC and killed more than 400. The World Health Organization said the death rate is 59 percent.
- WHO Reports Progress in Controlling Ebola in Congo VOA 01 Feb 2019 -- Six months after the outbreak of Ebola was declared in the Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province, the World Health Organization is expressing cautious optimism that it is making headway in controlling the spread of the deadly virus.
- Six months into DR Congo's deadliest Ebola outbreak, top UN official praises 'brave' response effort UN News 01 Feb 2019 -- "Brave" UN teams and partners leading the fight against deadly Ebola disease in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) along with Government authorities and peacekeepers there, have been key in helping protect communities, a top World Health Organization (WHO) official said on Friday, six months after the latest outbreak began.
- Trump Mulls Emergency Declaration to Build Border Wall VOA 01 Feb 2019 -- U.S. President Donald Trump said Friday that he would consider declaration of a national emergency as the path forward to building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border because he didn't think lawmakers' negotiations would produce the necessary funds.
- Any Border Security Legislation Will Not Include Trump's Wall Funding - Pelosi Sputnik 01 Feb 2019 -- US Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi told reporters on Thursday that Democrats would not support any legislation from Republicans on border security that includes funding for building a wall on the US southern border.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|