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Homeland Security News

A collection of open-source homeland security and terrorism news from around the world.
Date: May 4, 2021

The dead include a ninth grader who went out to protest with his brother; an artist shot in the head as cameras rolled; and a teenager whose mother’s anguished cries of grief — “son, I want to be with you!” — have been shared thousands of times online.

At least 19 people were killed and hundreds more injured during days of protests across Colombia, in which tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets to demonstrate against a tax overhaul meant to fill a pandemic-related fiscal hole.

On Sunday, President Iván Duque announced that he would withdraw the current proposal, and instead seek a new plan, this time borne out of consensus. “The reform is not a whim,” he said. “The reform is a necessity.”

Read more: New York Times

Differences between New Zealand and its top trading partner China are becoming harder to reconcile as Beijing's role in the world grows and changes, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Monday.

The comments come as New Zealand faces pressure from some elements among Western allies over its reluctance to use the Five Eyes intelligence and security alliance to criticize Beijing.

In a speech at the China Business Summit in Auckland, Ardern said there are things on which China and New Zealand "do not, cannot, and will not agree," but added these differences need not define their relationship.

"It will not have escaped the attention of anyone here that as China's role in the world grows and changes, the differences between our systems--and the interests and values that shape those systems--are becoming harder to reconcile," Ardern said.

Read more: Asahi Shimbun (Japan)

As far-right demonstrators gathered outside the Oregon Capitol in December in the hope of ending coronavirus restrictions, state Rep. Mike Nearman (R) appeared to deliberately allow entry to two men trying to breach the building as he was leaving.

Without hesitation, two rioters on Dec. 21 rushed inside the state Capitol in Salem, Ore., held doors open and signaled for others to come in before police arrived to cut off the security breach, according to surveillance video obtained by the Oregonian and Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Nearman, 57, now faces criminal charges for his role in allegedly allowing the rioters to breach the Oregon Capitol, Marion County District Attorney Paige E. Clarkson announced Friday. The GOP lawmaker has been charged with misdemeanor counts of first-degree official misconduct and second-degree criminal trespass, according to court documents.

Read more: Washington Post

Proud Boys Canada, a far-right group deemed a terrorist entity earlier this year by the Canadian government, has dissolved itself, saying it has done nothing wrong.

In February, Canada said the group posed an active security threat and played a "pivotal role" in the deadly attack on the US Capitol in January by supporters of then-president Donald Trump.

US authorities have charged several members of the Proud Boys in connection with the January 6 assault.

"The truth is, we were never terrorists or a white supremacy group," a statement posted by the administrator of the official Proud Boys channel on Telegram said.

Read more: ABC News (Australia)

Several explosive devices have been found near businesses west of Tracy, according to the San Joaquin Sheriff's Office.

In a tweet, the sheriff's office said the devices were located and deputies then began searching the suspect's vehicle.

Deputies have since reopened the roadway after the area was rendered safe.

Several businesses have been evacuated as a bomb squad investigates reports of possible explosive devices in an area west of Tracy, Monday evening.

According to the San Joaquin Sheriff's office, a man called 911 around 5:30 p.m. and told dispatch that he was going into a 7-Eleven with a bomb.

Deputies say when they arrived at the actual business, a Valero gas station, they detained the suspect at gunpoint. When they approached the man, they found he had a pipe bomb.

Read more: ABC 10 (Sacramento)