Federal authorities in the US have extended a national terror warning, citing a “challenging threat environment”.
The latest Department of Homeland Security bulletin follows a recent warning by FBI Director Christopher Wray which referred to the rising domestic terror threat, telling a Senate committee that domestic terror cases had more than doubled since early 2020.
“The Homeland continues to face a diverse and challenging threat environment as it approaches several religious holidays and associated mass gatherings that in the past have served as potential targets for acts of violence,” the latest bulletin said.
“These threats include those posed by individuals and small groups engaged in violence, including domestic violent extremists and those inspired or motivated by foreign terrorists and other malign foreign influences.”
Authorities, however, noted that intelligence gathered so far has not identified an “imminent and credible threat to a specific location in the United States.”
“The ongoing global pandemic continues to exacerbate these threats, in part due to perceived government overreach in implementation of public health safety measures,” the bulletin added.
“Further, foreign terrorist organizations and (domestic violent extremists) continue to attempt to inspire potential followers to conduct attacks in the United States, including by exploiting recent events in Afghanistan.”
Following the Afghanistan exit, officials said al Qaeda and ISIS have “celebrated perceived victories over the United States and encouraged the use of violence by their followers and supporters to further their objectives.”
“These foreign terrorist organizations will likely continue to maintain a highly visible online presence in an attempt to inspire US-based individuals to engage in violent activity,” the DHS warning stated.