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Islamic State determined to strike US this year, say Intelligence officials ISIS has ‘made and deployed chemical weapons’

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Published on February 12, 2016 with No Comments

ISIS as succeeded in making and deploying chemical agents in the Middle East, a US intelligence official has said. Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, said “sulphur mustard” has been used in an alleged ISIS attack in Syria and there are “numerous allegations” of Isis’ use of chemical weapons in both Syria and Iraq.
In a report accompanying Mr Clapper’s testimony on Capitol Hill before the Senate Armed Services on Tuesday he states: “We asses that non-state actors in the region are… using chemicals as a means of warfare.” He said an investigation “into an alleged ISIS attack in Syria in August” concluded “at least two people were exposed to [the blister agent] sulphur mustard. “We continue to track numerous allegations of ISIS’ use of chemicals in attacks in Iraq and Syria.”
Clapper is quoted by a leading TV channel as saying this is the first time an extremist group has produced and used a “chemical warfare agent in an attack since Aum Shrinrikyo used sarin in Japan in 1995,” referring to a subway attack in Tokyo that year.

As per reports in US media; Leaders of the Islamic State are determined to strike targets in the United States this year, senior intelligence officials have said, telling lawmakers that a small group of violent extremists will attempt to overcome the logistical challenges of mounting such an attack.

In testimony before congressional committees, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and other officials described the Islamic State as the “pre-eminent terrorist threat.” The militant group can “direct and inspire attacks against a wide range of targets around the world,” Clapper is reported to have said.

Marine Lt Gen Vincent Stewart, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, said the Islamic State will probably conduct additional attacks in Europe and then attempt the same in the US. He said US intelligence agencies believe IS leaders will be “increasingly involved in directing attacks rather than just encouraging lone attackers.”

Clapper also said al-Qaida, from which the Islamic State spun off, remains an enemy and the US will continue to see cyber threats from China, Russia and North Korea, which also is ramping up its nuclear program.

North Korea has expanded a uranium enrichment facility and restarted a plutonium reactor that could begin recovering material for nuclear weapons in weeks or months, Clapper said in delivering the annual assessment by intelligence agencies of the top dangers facing the country.

 

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