Federal officials notified law enforcement agencies Monday of a potential al-Qaida terrorist attack in which public buildings are targeted by suicide bombers.
According to NBC News, the analysis by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security describes a scenario where a dozen attackers each carrying 20 kilograms of explosives storm a building, "seal off escape and access points, and occupy it long enough to set and detonate their explosive packages."
In the al-Qaida plan, according to the analysis, suicide terrorists "would be able to enter many publicly accessible buildings easily with little or no resistance from often poorly trained and lightly armed or unarmed security guards, and that an explosion from inside the building would be particularly effective."
The FBI/DHS analysis states that a "recently discovered audio recording of al-Qaida training sessions conducted several years ago" provided detailed instructions on how to carry out such an attack.
The U.S. Office of Intelligence and Analysis told NBC that it has "no credible or specific information that terrorists are planning operations against public buildings in the United States." But the FBI and DHS analysts said they were releasing the note because "it is important for local authorities and building owners and operators to be aware of potential attack tactics."
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