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Homeland Security News

A collection of open-source homeland security and terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Jul 22, 2020

All 13 people taken hostage on a bus in western Ukraine were freed unharmed on Tuesday after President Volodymyr Zelenskiy spoke by phone with the hostage-taker and agreed to his demand to endorse a 2005 animal rights documentary.

Police arrested the suspect, whom the state security service (SBU) identified as 44-year-old Maksym Kryvosh, who seized the bus in the city of Lutsk, saying he was armed with guns and explosives.

Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said Kryvosh had served time in prison and the SBU said he had propagated “extremist views”. Police said Kryvosh threatened to blow up the bus and detonate another explosive in a crowded area in the city.

Read more: Reuters

Authorities have charged a Tajik man with membership in a terrorist organization on allegations he led a group plotting attacks in Germany in coordination with Islamic State leaders in Syria and Afghanistan, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Ravsan B., whose last name wasn't released in line with German privacy laws, also faces charges of weapons violations, preparing an act of violence, and other counts.

The 30-year-old, who has been in custody since March 2019, is accused of forming a cell of the Islamic State in Germany with other Tajik nationals no later than January 2019 to carry out attacks and raise money for the extremist organization.

Read more: AP (via MSN)

Explosive experts with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are being asked to investigate improvised explosive devices which were thrown at officers by rioters at the West Precinct Sunday. Some of the devices are believed to have been layered in BBs, intended to spray shrapnel when the devices exploded, according to sources with knowledge of the investigation.

Among the 12 officers injured in the confrontation, one had neck injuries caused by flying debris from an explosive.

"The protesters lit mortar-type fireworks and threw them at officers from a very close range," said SPD spokesperson Sgt. Lauren Truscott. "Those devices can blind, maim and kill people."

Read more: KIRO (Seattle)

Authorities on Monday night arrested a 50-year-old Pittsburg man on suspicion of planting a homemade explosive device outside his former employer.

The incident was reported about 5:45 p.m. on the 1000 block of Apollo Court, said Antioch police Lt. Powell Meads in a news release. An employee inside a business said the suspect, identified as Timothy Harrington, had left the device out front and driven away.

Meads said Harrington was recently fired from the business.

Officers detained Harrington near the scene. They then requested the assistance of the Walnut Creek Police Department bomb squad, which confirmed the device was an explosive, Meads said.

Read more: East Bay Times

A Lebanese man accused of laundering drug money for the militant group Hezbollah has been extradited from Cyprus to the United States.

Ghassan Diab, 37, arrived in Miami last week to face charges dating back to 2016 in the U.S. state of Florida, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a statement Saturday.

Diab has been charged with two counts of money laundering over $100,000, two counts of conspiracy to launder over $100,000, two counts of unlicensed transmission of currency over $100,000, and two counts of unlawful use of a two-way communications device to further the commission of money laundering, all of which are felonies under Florida law, according to a statement released by the department.

Read more: Voice of America