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Homeland Security News

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

A convicted terrorist found driving bin lorries in London has been jailed for failing to tell police he was driving potentially dangerous vehicles.

Andrew Rowe, 50, of north west London, spent two months driving the vehicles across Hammersmith and Fulham as part of his work.

Rowe pleaded guilty to nine counts of failing to comply with terror notification orders.

He was sentenced at the Old Bailey to 10 months in prison.

Passing sentence Judge Angela Rafferty said: "Notification requirements for convicted terrorists are imposed for the safety of all and to manage the risks inherent in this kind of offending."

In mitigation, Catherine Oborne said Rowe had been trying to get on with his life and fit into society.

Read more: BBC News

A former candidate for the New York state senate charged in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol asked people to delete videos and photos of him inside the building after his friends began to get arrested.

Daniel Christmann was taken into custody Wednesday on charges of disorderly conduct, entering a restricted building and demonstrating in a Capitol building, according to the Department of Justice.

Federal authorities said several people reached out to investigators with the FBI to provide information on Christmann's participation in the riot. A criminal complaint states that Christmann made several posts on his "dannyforsenate" Instagram account showing a large crowd of people inside the Capitol.

He had also shared a video of a man yelling, "We want Nancy ...we want the rest of them." The FBI said it believes the man, who was not Christmann, was referring to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and other lawmakers.

Read more: NBC News

China’s Foreign Minister met with senior leaders of the Taliban in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin on Wednesday in the latest sign of warming ties between Beijing and the resurgent Islamist group.

During a meeting with Taliban’s co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who heads the group’s political committee, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi described the Taliban as an important military and political force in Afghanistan, and said he expected the Taliban to play an important role in the country’s “peace, reconciliation and reconstruction process,” according to China’s Foreign Ministry.

Following the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan, the Taliban has rapidly expanded its presence – and now controls large swathes of country. The speed at which Afghan security forces have lost control to the Taliban has shocked many, and led to concerns the capital Kabul could be next to fall. All foreign forces are expected to leave Afghanistan by August 31.

Read more: CNN

South Africa’s port and rail company appears to have been targeted with a strain of ransomware that cybersecurity experts have linked to a series of high-profile data breaches likely carried out by crime gangs from Eastern Europe and Russia.

The hackers left a ransom note on Transnet SOC Ltd.’s computers, seen by Bloomberg News, claiming they encrypted the company’s files, including a terabyte of personal data, financial reports and other documents. The note instructed the firm to visit a chat portal on the dark web to enter negotiations.

Transnet spokeswoman Ayanda Shezi didn’t answer multiple phone calls and WhatsApp messages seeking comment. A probe into the motive for the attack is still underway, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan said in a statement on Wednesday.

Read more: Bloomberg

At least two rockets hit Baghdad's fortified Green Zone early on Thursday but caused no casualties, Iraqi security sources said.

One senior Iraqi security official said the rockets were launched from a mainly Shi'ite neighbourhood in eastern Baghdad and initial investigations indicate the rockets were targeting the U.S. embassy, but fell short.

One rocket landed in a parking lot inside the Green Zone and a second one hit a nearby empty area, said the sources.

Thursday's attack comes two days after U.S. President Joe Biden and Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi sealed an agreement on Monday formally ending the U.S. combat mission in Iraq by the end of 2021.

Prime Minister Kadhimi has been facing increasing pressure from Iran-aligned parties and paramilitary groups who oppose the U.S. military role in the country.

Read more: US News & World Report