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Homeland Security News

A collection of open-source homeland security and terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Mar 8, 2021

The headquarters of Portland Public Schools was vandalized overnight in what the district superintendent is calling “an attack on our city’s public school system.”

Multiple school district vehicles were set on fire, office windows were broken and graffiti was scrawled on the district headquarters, 501 N. Dixon St., Superintendent Guadalupe Guerrero said.

“While I am relieved that no one was hurt and there was no further damage to the building, this malicious act of arson and property destruction last night was criminal and it has no place in our community,” Guerrero said in a statement posted to the district’s Twitter account Saturday. “This was an attack on our city’s public school system.”

Read more: The Oregonian

Yemen's Houthi rebels claimed that they hit an Aramco oil facility in eastern Saudi Arabia on Sunday, the first time the group has reached the company's facilities in that area.

In a televised statement, a spokesman for the rebel group, Brig. Gen. Yahya Sarea, said ballistic missiles and drones hit the oil giant’s facilities in Ras Tanura, a major port on Saudi Arabia’s Persian Gulf coast and one of its largest refineries, and military positions in nearby Dammam.

Saudi state media later confirmed the Ras Tanura attack, quoting an unnamed Energy Ministry official saying that one petroleum tank farm was attacked Sunday morning. The official said shrapnel from a ballistic missile fell near Aramco’s residential area in Dhahran, which hosts thousands of employees and their families, but there were no casualties or loss of property. The Saudi-led coalition, which has been fighting the Iranian-backed rebels since 2015, then said both attacks were intercepted and the drones downed.

Read more: Washington Post

Italian state police arrested an Algerian citizen in Italy’s southern city of Bari Monday who is suspected of belonging to Islamic State and providing help for the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris that killed 130 people. 

Police identified the 36-year-old Algerian as Athmane Touami, also known as Tomi Mahraz.  

According to investigators, Touami gave direct support for the perpetrators of the terrorist attacks at the Bataclan concert hall, the Stade de France, and in three boroughs of Paris on Nov. 13, 2015.

The Paris attacks in which hundreds more people were wounded, were France's deadliest since World War II.

Read more: Voice of America

Portland's police and fire authorities are asking for information from the public after investigators say an explosion went off near an RV Saturday morning.

Firefighters found smoke but no fire when they were called out to an incident in the Argay Terrace Neighborhood involving a trailer. No one was injured, however, it was unknown if the RV was occupied at the time. Portland police officers were also called out to assist.

Investigators say evidence indicated that an explosion happened outside the RV and described the event as "suspicious in nature." Police said an explosive device was believed to be the cause.

Read more: KATU (Portland, OR)

Pope Francis on Sunday marked the final day of his historic pilgrimage to Iraq. The pope spoke at Mosul, once the stronghold of the ISIS caliphate, condemning ISIS terrorism while calling for forgiveness.

It was always against the odds: Pope Francis, defying extreme security risks to come to a country as dangerous as Iraq.

But Sunday marked the climax of the first-ever papal visit, with the pontiff setting foot in Mosul, a city once ransacked and ruled by ISIS, and while liberated now, is still war-torn.

"Hope is more powerful than hatred," said the pontiff, inside what's left of a church.

Then, off to Qaraqosh, a Christian town nearly annihilated by ISIS.

Read more: CBS News