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WASHINGTON (AP) — The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee says he believes the Boston Marathon bombing suspects had some training in carrying out their attack.

Rep. Michael McCaul is citing the type of device used in the attack — shrapnel-packed pressure-cooker bombs — and the weapons' sophistication as signs of training.

Homemade bombs built from pressure cookers have been a frequent weapon of militants in Afghanistan, India and Pakistan. Al-Qaida's branch in Yemen once published an online manual on how to make one.

McCaul also tells "Fox News Sunday" that he thinks the suspects' mother played "a very strong role" in her sons' radicalization process and that if she were to return to the United States from Russia, she'd be held for questioning.

Published in National News

   KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - A bus collided on Friday with the wreckage of a truck that was attacked by Taliban insurgents in southern Afghanistan, killing 30 people aboard the bus in a fiery crash, officials said.

   The battered truck was left in the middle of a narrow road on the border of Helmand and Kandahar provinces for several days after insurgents opened fire on it. Police considered the area too dangerous to enter, the officials said.

   Before sunrise Friday, the bus smashed into the truck and both vehicles burst into flames, badly burning many of the bus passengers, said Abdul Razaq, the provincial police chief of Kandahar.

   Razaq said eight passengers were injured. Omar Zawak, the governor's spokesman in Helmand province, put the injury total at 11. Both said the casualties included men, women and children.

   The bus began its journey in the capital of Helmand province and was scheduled to stop in Kandahar city, then travel north to Kabul, the Afghan capital, Razaq said.

   

Published in National News

   BOSTON (AP) - The next step in the legal process against the surviving Boston Marathon bombing suspect is likely to be an indictment, in which federal prosecutors could add new charges to existing ones that could carry the death penalty.

   Still unable to speak because of wounds, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev answered questions in writing yesterday and was officially charged in the bombing.

   U.S. officials say Tsarnaev  and his brother appear to have been motivated by their religious views, not any connection to any Muslim terrorist groups. The officials made the assessment after Tsarnaev was interrogated in his hospital room, where he's being treated for severe wounds allegedly suffered during violent encounters with law enforcement following the Boston Marathon bombings.

   He was charged Monday with federal crimes that could bring the death penalty, including using a weapon of mass destruction to kill.

   The brothers, ethnic Chechens from Russia who had been living in the U.S. for about a decade, practiced Islam.

Published in National News

BOSTON (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union and the public defender's office have raised concerns about investigators' plans to interrogate the surviving Boston Marathon bombing suspect without reading him his Miranda rights.

The Massachusetts Federal Public Defender's office says it will take the case of 19-year-old bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-KHAR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv). Public defender Miriam Conrad says there are "serious issues" regarding the interrogation.

ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero says the legal exception applies only when there is a continued threat and is not open-ended.

It's not clear when Tsarnaev will be able to answer questions. He's hospitalized in serious condition and under heavy guard after being arrested Friday night following a daylong manhunt punctuated by gunfire.

Published in National News

   WATERTOWN, Mass. (AP) - Police say one of two suspects in the shooting of an MIT police officer is dead and a massive manhunt is underway for another, who is tied to the Boston Marathon bombing.

   Shortly after the MIT officer was shot Thursday night, police got a report of a carjacking in Cambridge, just outside Boston.

   Police say of the at-large suspect, "We believe this to be a terrorist."

   The FBI is investigating whether the fatal shooting of a campus police officer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and gunfire and explosions in a nearby town are related to the Boston Marathon bombings.

   A Massachusetts State Police spokesman said early Friday that one person suspected in the gunfire and explosions has been accounted for and one is at large.

   The FBI said it is working with local authorities to determine what happened.

   The MIT shooting on the Cambridge campus Thursday night was followed by reports of violence in nearby Watertown, about 10 miles west of Boston.

   State police spokesman David Procopio said there is a "strong possibility" the incidents are related.

   The MIT officer had been responding to report of a disturbance Thursday night when he was shot multiple times, according to a statement from the Middlesex district attorney's office and Cambridge police. It said there were no other victims.

   In Watertown, witnesses reported hearing multiple gunshots and explosions at about 1 a.m. Friday. Dozens of police officers and FBI agents were in the neighborhood and a helicopter circled overhead.

   State police spokesman David Procopio said, "The incident in Watertown did involve what we believe to be explosive devices possibly, potentially, being used against the police officers."

   Boston cab driver Imran Sais said he was standing on a street corner at a police barricade across from a diner when he heard an explosion.

   "I heard a loud boom and then a rapid succession of pop, pop, pop," he said. "It sounded like automatic weapons. And then I heard the second explosion."

   He said he could smell something burning and advanced to check it out but area residents at their windows yelled at him, "Hey, it's gunfire! Don't go that way!"

   MIT said right after the 10:30 p.m. shooting that police were sweeping the campus in Cambridge and urged people to remain indoors. They urged people urged to stay away from the Stata Building, a mixed-use building with faculty offices, classrooms and a common area.

   Hours later, MIT, which has about 11,000 students, said the campus was clear but the shooter was still on the loose.

   

Published in National News

   The FBI has released images of two suspects connected to the Boston Marathon Bombing.

   Officials say the suspects are armed and dangerous and no one should approach them or try to apprehend them.

   The FBI says no piece of information is too small.

   More FBI pictures, including higher quality photos can be found here

Published in National News

BOSTON -- ABC News -- Authorities are close to identifying a suspect in the deadly Boston Marathon bombing, an official in Boston told ABC News.

ABC News' Boston affiliate, WCVB, reported a source had said a suspect has already been identified and an arrest is imminent. Surveillance video taken from cameras at a Lord & Taylor along the marathon route helped identify the suspect, WCVB said.

A pair of blasts erupted Monday afternoon near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuring more than 170 others.

Authorities said they have been analyzing thousands of photos of the event and tracking down as many leads since the bombing. Tuesday ABC News reported part of a pressure cooker bomb had been recovered from the scene with wires, shrapnel and a circuit board. That evidence has been sent to the FBI lap in Quantico, Virginia for analysis, officials said.

Published in National News

   PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — The Pakistani Taliban have denied any role in the bombings at the Boston Marathon that killed at least three people and injured more than 140.

   The group's spokesman, Ahsanullah Ahsan, denied involvement in a telephone call with The Associated Press on Tuesday. He spoke from an undisclosed location.

   The main focus of the Pakistani Taliban has been a bloody insurgency against the Pakistani government because of its alliance with the United States and to enforce Islamic law in the country.

   But the group has threatened attacks in the U.S. as well, and claimed responsibility for a failed car bombing in New York's Times Square in 2010.

   The Times Square attacker, Faisal Shahzad, has admitted to getting training from the Pakistani Taliban in the country's tribal region.

Published in National News

   MOSCOW (AP) — The organizers of the World Athletics Championship in Moscow say they will beef up security in the wake of deadly explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

   The August 10 to 18 event is seen as a dress rehearsal for the 2014 Winter Games in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi.

   The R-Sport news agency on Tuesday quoted Valentin Balakhnichev, president of the Russian Athletics Federation, as saying that the organizers "will draw conclusions" from the Boston bombings.

   Balakhnichev said the security standards they adhere to are high but the organizers "will take tougher measures" to ensure security.

Published in National News
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) - Turkey's state-run news agency says police are rounding up dozens of people suspected of membership in a left-wing militant group that has claimed responsibility for a suicide attack at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara earlier this month.

It was the second major sweep against suspected members of the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front, or DHKP-C, since January. It wasn't immediately clear if the arrests were directly linked to the embassy bombing which killed a Turkish security guard on Feb. 1.

The Anadolu Agency said Tuesday police were arresting dozens of people in 28 provinces across Turkey.

The DHKP-C has claimed responsibility for assassinations and bombings since the 1970s but had been relatively quiet in recent years.
Published in National News
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