Global ‘terror’ death toll soared in 2014, US gov’t says

The China Post - - FRONT PAGE - BY JO BID­DLE

Is­lamic ji­hadists fu­elled a huge spike in terror at­tacks last year with the global death toll soar­ing 81 per­cent in more than 1,100 as­saults a month, the United States said Fri­day.

There were 13,463 at­tacks in 95 coun­tries in 2014 — up by a third from the year be­fore — with Iraq, Pak­istan and Afghanistan bear­ing the brunt of ex­trem­ist vi­o­lence, the State Depart­ment said in a re­port.

The largest num­ber of at­tacks were car­ried out by Is­lamic State ( IS) mil­i­tants, who un­leashed 1,083 as­saults last year as part of a deadly march across Iraq and Syria. The Tal­iban were the next most lethal group, with 894 at­tacks.

There was also a sharp rise in vi­o­lence in Nige­ria, where Boko Haram’s Is­lamist mil­i­tants have been spread­ing terror in the north. Some 7,512 peo­ple were killed in 662 at­tacks.

The re­port also high­lighted a rise in “lone of­fender vi­o­lent ex­trem­ists in the West” such as the Char­lie Hebdo at­tacks in Jan­uary in Paris.

“The ter­ror­ism chal­lenges that we face con­tinue to evolve at a rapid pace and we can­not pre­dict with pre­ci­sion what the land­scape will look like one decade or even re­ally a year from now,” said top U.S. coun­tert­er­ror­ism en­voy Tina Kaidanow, un­veil­ing the 2014 Coun­try Re­ports on Ter­ror­ism.

“We must do more to ad­dress the cy­cle of vi­o­lent ex­trem­ism and trans­form the very en­vi­ron­ment from which these ter­ror­ist move­ments emerge.”

Ac­knowl­edg­ing

that most

of the recorded at­tacks were in war zones, Kaidanow de­nounced the “sav­agery” seen last year which had spurred the high death toll.

AP

Yemenis in­spect the site of an ex­plo­sion near the old city of Sanaa, Ye­men, Satur­day, June 20. The car bomb ex­ploded in front of a mosque in the cap­i­tal Sanaa Satur­day af­ter­noon, killing sev­eral peo­ple and wound­ing at least six oth­ers, se­cu­rity of­fi­cials said. The Is­lamic State branch in Ye­men’s cap­i­tal claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for the at­tack in a state­ment posted on an Is­lamic State Twit­ter ac­count, say­ing they were tar­get­ing Shi­ite Houthi rebels.

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