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U.S. Att'y Gen'l Ashcroft Issues New Terrorism Alert, Not Specific as to LB or Other Site(s), Warning of Possible Add'l Terror Attacks Over the Next Week

Says based on information the administration considers credible

(October 29, 2001) -- U.S Attorney General John Ashcroft, flanked by FBI Director Robert Mueller, has issued a new terrorism alert, not specific as to LB or any other site(s), warning of possible additional terror attacks over the next week. The Attorney General said the alert is based on information the administration considers credible.

In the public interest, provides a transcript (prepared by us) of the statements by the Attorney General and FBI Director below:

U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft

"The administration has concluded, based on information developed, that there may be additional terrorist attacks within the United States, and against the United States interests, over the next week.

"The administration views this information as credible, but unfortunately it doesn't contain specific information as to the type of attack of specific targets. Consequently, a terrorist threat advisory has been issued to 18,000 law enforcement agencies across the country through the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System...We have notified law enforcement to continue on highest alert and to notify immediately the FBI of any unusual or suspicious activity.

"We ask for the patience and coopertation of the American people if and when they encounter additional measures undertaken by local law enforcement or federal law enforcement authorities and others who are chraged with securing the safety of the public.

"As always, we urge Americans in the course of their normal activities to remain alert and to report unusual circumstances or inappropriate behavior to the proper authorities.

"Additional security measures have been or are being taken by a number of governmental agencies including the INS, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Dept. of Transportation, the Dept. of Energy, among the departments who have been notified of the alert.

"Governor [Homeland Security Dir.] Ridge has also discussed this heightened state of security with the Governors who are asked to take approriate precautions based upon security assessments in their respective states."

FBI Director Robert Mueller

"On every occasion when the government has received credible information, we have chosen to warn our colleagues in the law enforcement community, and we are doing so again today because we have such information, even though it is not specific as to intended target or as to intended method...

"...We are again asking [law enforcement and local authorities] and through them local communities, to remain extremely vigilant. Doing so gives us a force multiplier that could well prevewnt another terrorist attac, and we appreciate their willingness, however difficult, to join in this national effort."

Additional remarks by Mr. Ashcroft

"We have decided to share with the American people that we have alerted law enforcement, and that's important. Because we are alerting law enforcement and conferring with them, we think this gives people a basis for continuing to live their lives the way they would otherwise live them with this elevated sense of alertness or vigilance.

"I trust the American people to be able to understand in this context of conflict, where there is a front overseas, and there is another front here in the United States, that they can make good judgments and can understand this kind of information...It is not specific but it is information that we think the American people have a good, mature judgment and capacity to accommodate and to understand, and it's with that in mind that we are speaking to them about a notice that we are providing to law enforcement.
"If people take these warnings seriously, they go about their lives but they participate with patience in the additional steps that are taken by law enforcement authorities, they are very likely participating in the prevention of terrorism and in the disruption of terrorism.

"...It's important for the American people to understand that these [alerts] are to be taken seriously, but by taking them seriously on a continuing basis, we can have a good outcome of avoiding very serious additional terrorist problems.

"...We believe this threat to be credible and for that reason it should be taken seriously."

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