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Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

Terror threat assessment highlights rise in homegrown extremism

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Four U.S. citizens were arrested and charged with providing material support to ISIS in December, marking an uptick in the number of cases of homegrown terrorism, according to an assessment released by the House Homeland Security Committee on Friday.

The Terror Threat Snapshot indicates that two of the people arrested volunteered to carry out attacks on behalf of ISIS. Overall,150 alleged homegrown terrorists have been arrested in the United States since 2013.

“Over the past year, we have seen the collapse of ISIS’ physical caliphate in Iraq and Syria,” U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), chairman of the committee, said. “The group still has the capability, however, to conduct external operations, and the threat facing the United States and the West remains severe.”

The assessment also highlights an attempted suicide bombing in New York City on Dec. 12. Akayed Ullah, 27, a Bangladeshi immigrant, allegedly injured three people and himself when he detonated a low-tech explosive device on the subway.

“December marked the first attempted suicide attack in the United States, when a terrorist detonated an explosive device in New York City, and large-scale ISIS-linked plots in Germany and St. Petersburg were foiled,” McCaul said. “Given the loss of its safe havens, ISIS has shifted its attention toward cyberspace to recruit, radicalize, and provide guidance and instructions for carrying out attacks. In this new year, we must continue to work with our allies across the globe to crush ISIS fighters wherever they may be and defeat ISIS in cyberspace.”