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Terrorism News

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

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

Three Russian servicemen and four gunmen were killed in a shootout in southern Russia on Wednesday during a sweep for militants before the Sochi Winter Olympics.  Russia's National Anti-terrorism Committee (NAC) said the dead gunmen included a man accused of carrying out a car bomb attack in the city of Pyatigorsk late last year which killed three people.

Russia in on high alert following two suicide bombings in southern Russia last month that fuelled security concerns before the Olympics, which Islamist militants waging an insurgency in the North Caucasus have threatened to attack.  President Vladimir Putin has staked a lot of personal and political prestige on the success of the Games, which open on February 7, and has put security forces on combat alert in Sochi.

Read More:  Reuters

An al-Qaeda-linked group that has carried out attacks across the Middle East has vowed to target Iran and Hezbollah following the death of its leader in Lebanon.  Majid al-Majid was arrested by the Lebanese army last month and authorities said he later died at a military hospital in Beirut from chronic illness.

A statement issued by the Abdullah Azzam Brigades accused Hezbollah of killing al-Majid, saying his condition worsened in detention. It did not elaborate, but extremist Sunnis in Lebanon have accused the army of being complicit with the Iranian-backed Shiite Muslim group.

Source:  USA Today

The head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation is sending dozens of agents and other specialists to Russia to help secure the Winter Olympics from possible terrorist attacks. FBI Director James Comey told reporters on Thursday that the level of cooperation between Russian and U.S. intelligence officials has improved heading toward the games, but noted there are clear terrorism concerns surrounding the Olympics.

Mr. Comey said the FBI is poised to help with security, but keeping the Games safe is ultimately a Russian responsibility. About two dozen FBI personnel will be based in Moscow, and an additional dozen or so in Sochi, where the Games are scheduled to begin in less than a month, Mr. Comey said. Some of those people are already there, the director said.

Russian authorities are devoting "enormous resources and effort'' to securing the games, Mr. Comey said. "I know that we have been in regular communication, including me personally, with their security organizations to make sure we are coordinating well, and I think that we are.'' The Russian embassy in Washington didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered increased security measures after two bomb attacks killed at least 34 people last month in Volgograd, a city about 425 miles away from the Olympic site.

Read More: The Wall Street Journal

The senior commander of an Al-Qaeda-linked group believed to be behind a Beirut bomb blast that killed 23 people in November has died just days after he was arrested by the Lebanese army.  Lebanese army and judicial sources said Majid al-Majid, a Saudi citizen who was the senior leader of the Abdullah Azzam Brigades, died on Saturday after suffering kidney failure.

Majid, suspected over a series for attacks across the Middle East before focusing on Syria, was held at an undisclosed place in Lebanon. He was one of the 85 most-wanted individuals in his native Saudi Arabia.  The Abdullah Azzam Brigades claimed it carried out the November 19 twin suicide bombings that targeted the Iranian embassy in Beirut. In tweets at the time of the bombing, the group threatened more attacks in Lebanon unless Iran pulled its forces out of Syria.

Last year Abdullah Azzam Brigades, named after an associate of the late Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, were formally designated by the U.S. State Department as a foreign terrorist organization.

Read More:  AlJazeera America