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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Keyword: global impact events

On Sunday, ISIS fighters captured Syria's Tabqa air base, the last Syrian military outpost in an area that is now dominated by the radical Jihadist organization.  The air base had been the scene of intense fighting between ISIS and the Syrian military for the past week. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) estimates that at least 346 ISIS militants and 170 Syrian forces were killed in the assault. Securing the Tabqa air base marks yet another victory for ISIS, one that will allow the group to further solidify its hold over northern and eastern Syria.

Additionally, the base provided the militants with weaponry — including anti-aircraft systems — that could enable them to further advance their regional ambitions.  IS fighters have captured SA-16 MANPADS, AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles & MiG-21B jets in Tabaqa Airbase, Raqqa. ISIS fighters managed to loot SA-16 man-portable air defense systems (MANPADS), Sidewinder missiles, and even MiG-21B fighter jets.

It is extremely unlikely that the militants have the manpower or the expertise to make use of the jets or the Sidewinder missiles.  But the MANPADS pose dangers of their own.  SA-16 MANPADS are shoulder-mounted homing missiles that are relatively simple to use. A missile fired from an SA-16 can reach an aircraft flying as high as 16,000 feet.  This would put low-flying aircraft and helicopters at risk of being targeted by the jihadists, raising additional challenges for carrying out airstrikes against ISIS. 

Read more: Yahoo Finance

A major US hospital group said it was the victim of a cyber-attack resulting in the theft of 4.5 million people's personal data.  The attack, which Community Health Systems believed originated in China, happened in April and June this year.  The data included patient names, addresses, birthdates, telephone numbers and social security numbers.

The firm, which runs 206 hospitals in 29 states, is now in the process of notifying affected patients.  One security expert warned that the data could be used to steal people's identity.  The FBI confirmed to news agency Reuters that it was investigating the breach.

Community Health Systems stressed that it believed no medical or credit card records were taken.  News of the attack follows several warnings, from both law enforcement and security experts, that medical equipment is at risk from hack attacks due to poor security measures.

Read More:  BBC News

Libyan militiamen fired rockets into an affluent district of Tripoli early on Tuesday, moving a battle with a rival armed faction closer to the center of the capital after fighters on one side came under air attack.  Rebel factions who united to topple Muammar Gaddafi in 2011 have since turned their guns on each other, spreading anarchy in oil-producing Libya and raising fears it may become a failed state destabilizing the wider North and West African region.

An air force controlled by renegade General Khalifa Haftar were responsible for strikes on Islamist-leaning militia in Tripoli on Monday, one of his commanders said, after weeks of fighting for the capital and its airport.  Hours later after nightfall, unidentified militiamen fired Grad rockets into the Hay Andalus and Gargaresh districts, among the most well-to-do in Tripoli, killing three people, residents said. A health ministry official had no casualty figures.

The neighborhoods, home to the Libyan bourse, elegant cafes and foreign brand outlets such as Nike or Marks & Spencer, had been buzzing with shoppers until recently.

Read More:  Reuters

Unidentified war planes may have carried out overnight air strikes on the Libyan capital Tripoli, according to local media. Residents reported seeing jets fly over the city and hearing explosions. The country has been by gripped by fighting between rival militias that spearheaded the 2011 uprising against long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi.
The violence has been centred around the international airport in Tripoli and in the eastern city of Benghazi. On Monday, several Libyan TV channels said planes had targeted bases of militiamen from Misrata who have been battling brigades from the western Zintan region to gain control of Tripoli.
Reuters news agency quotes forces loyal to renegade General Khalifa Haftar as saying they were behind what they termed air strikes "on some militias' locations belonging to Misrata militias". The group's claim could not be independently verified.
Read more: BBC

Australian police revealed Thursday they had cracked a major global money-laundering ring with operatives in more than 20 countries and funds syphoned off to groups reported to include Hezbollah.  The Australian Crime Commission said more than Aus$580 million (US$512 million) of drugs and assets had been seized, including Aus$26 million in cash, in a year-long sting codenamed Eligo targeting the offshore laundering of funds generated by outlaw motorcycle gangs, people-smugglers and others.

According to the ACC, the operation had disrupted 18 serious and organized crime groups and singled out 128 individuals of interest in more than 20 countries, tapping information from agencies including the United States Drug Enforcement Administration.  Eligo saw 105 people arrested on 190 separate charges and resulted in the closure of three major clandestine methamphetamine labs and Australia’s largest-ever urban hydroponic cannabis hothouse in Sydney last November.

Read more: Al-Arabiya