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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Jun 2012

The FBI has conducted more than 100 investigations into suspected Islamic extremists within the military, NPR has learned.  About a dozen of those cases are considered serious.  Officials define that as a case requiring a formal investigation to gather information against suspects who appear to have demonstrated a strong intent to attack military targets. This is the first time the figures have been publicly disclosed.

The FBI and Department of Defense call these cases "insider threats."  They include not just active and reserve military personnel but also individuals who have access to military facilities such as contractors and close family members with dependent ID cards.  Officials would not provide details about the cases and the FBI would not confirm the numbers, but they did say that cases seen as serious could include, among others things, suspects who seem to be planning an attack or were in touch with "dangerous individuals" who were goading them to attack.

Read more: NPR

Police are searching a west London address after the arrest of two members of the Basque separatist group Eta, one of whom has been convicted for 22 killings, the Spanish interior ministry said on Friday.  Antonio Troitino, 55, and 39-year-old Ignacio Lerin Sanchez were arrested over alleged terrorist offences in Spain at around 4am on Friday, the Metropolitan police said.  Five suspected Eta members have been arrested this week in France, Spain and Britain as part of a joint crackdown on the group, the Spanish ministry announced.

Weakened by the arrests of most of its leaders and by waning support in the Basque region, Eta said in October it would give up its armed struggle, which lasted more than 40 years and claimed more than 800 lives.  But Madrid has declined to negotiate a definitive end to the conflict, insisting that Eta disband and hand over its weapons.  Sixteen suspected Eta members have been arrested so far this year, mostly in France and Spain.

Read more: The Guardian

A Saudi man accused of buying chemicals online and attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction was found guilty Wednesday in federal court in Amarillo.  Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari, who was legally in the United States on a student visa, was arrested in February 2011 after federal agents secretly searched his apartment near Texas Tech University in Lubbock and found bomb-making chemicals, wiring, a hazmat suit, and clocks.  Authorities also discovered Aldawsari's journal, handwritten in Arabic, in which he wrote he'd been planning a terror attack in the United States for years and that it was "time for jihad," or holy war, court documents show.

Read more: Associated Press

A Saudi court has sentenced 11 men to up to 15 years in prison for membership of a cell linked to al Qaeda that planned to attack U.S. forces in Kuwait and state-owned Saudi oil giant Aramco, Saudi media reported on Wednesday.  The 11 were among thousands of people rounded up as the world's top oil exporter battled al Qaeda militants between 2003 and 2006.  Alriyadh newspaper said the sentences, handed down by the Specialised Criminal Court in the Saudi capital on Tuesday, ranged from two to 15 years in jail.

"The verdicts ... include 15 years in prison for the first defendant for joining a terror cell which targeted American forces in Kuwait and important Aramco sites," the newspaper said.  A spokesman from the Justice Ministry could not be reached for comment.

Read more: Reuters

A Muslim couple were assembling components of a home-made bomb to attack Jewish neighbourhoods after becoming radicalized by al Qaeda propaganda on the internet, a court heard.  Mohammed Sajid Khan, 33, and his wife Shasta, 38, bought substances and equipment from supermarkets to assemble an improvised explosive device to carry out a terrorist attack after scoping Jewish targets, Manchester Crown Court heard.

Behind their 'apparent normality of daily life', Khan, an unemployed car valeter, and his hairdresser wife planned to carry out 'jihad at home', Bobbie Cheema, prosecuting, told the court.  And the pair were only 'mercifully' stopped by chance after a minor domestic row led to police being called to their house in Oldham, Greater Manchester.  Mrs Khan decided to 'spill the beans' to police after her brother told officers called to the row 'I think he's a home-grown terrorist'.  Mohammed Sajid Khan has already pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to terrorism offences but his wife has denied any involvement.

Read more: The Telegraph