Globe Braces for al-Qaida Terror Backlash

Tuesday, 03 May 2011 12:55 PM

By David A. Patten

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Officials in the United States and abroad are stepping up security measures in a bid to head off the terror attacks that have been widely predicted since Sunday’s news of the death of Osama bin Laden.

CIA Director Leon Panetta said yesterday that terrorists “almost certainly” will try to avenge bin Laden’s killing.

Among the precautions being taken:

• The FBI has sent an alert to all field offices warning of possible reprisals.

• Police in New York and Los Angeles have been placed on high alert.

• The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is increasing the police presence at key infrastructure points, including bridges and airports, as well as in lower Manhattan.

• Churchill Downs officials expect over 155,000 fans to attend Saturday’s Kentucky Derby. Race officials are meeting with Kentucky law enforcement officials to determine if further security measures would be advisable.

• For the first time since 9/11, the NBA is requiring fans to pass through metal detectors at all playoff-game venues .

• London’s Guardian newspaper reports that U.S., British, and Australia diplomatic outposts have stepped up security. European security officials are particularly concerned about terrorist counterstrikes there.

• The Philippines and Indonesia, where al-Qaida affiliates are especially active, have tightened security at embassies and airports.

• Boston’s Logan Airport is reportedly beefing up security.

• Police in Chicago and Philadelphia are keeping a watchful eye on religious institutions, such as mosques and synagogues.

• Chicago police are reportedly increasing their patrols around the Daley Center.

• D.C. police are boosting security on the Metro, at hotels, and at federal buildings.


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