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FBI: Possible scuba diver attacks

From Terry Frieden
CNN Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The FBI sent a nationwide alert Thursday night to state and local law enforcement agencies saying that it has received information about a possible threat from underwater divers, but the agency emphasizes the alert carries no specific information.

The bureau considers the information uncorroborated and unconfirmed.

FBI sources said Friday the information relating to a potential scuba diver attack came during the continued questioning of detainees being held since their capture in Afghanistan, where U.S. and coalition forces have been chasing al Qaeda and Taliban loyalists linked with terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden.

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The information made no mention of any potential locations or industries where a scuba-diving terrorist might strike.

But the sources said FBI field offices around the country will be contacting those industries it believes might be most vulnerable to that type of attack.

Some atomic power stations, for example, draw reactor cooling water from nearby waterways.

In addition, the Coast Guard has passed along the information to all major ports and shipping lines, as well as the power, cruise ship and pipeline industries, U.S. Coast Guard spokesman Cmdr. Jim McPherson said.

It is asking the public to report any suspicious activity, such as scuba divers near cruise ships or merchant vessels.

The FBI stressed the message sent through the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (N-LETS) was just one in a series of such alerts generated as a result of the interrogation of the detainees.

About 300 are held at the U.S. military base in Guantanamo, Cuba. An unspecified number of additional detainees are still held in Afghanistan.




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