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Travel Alert Issued Following Death of Bin Laden, Security Upped at LAX
The increased potential for retaliation by Al Qaeda operatives, as well as those with anti-American sentiments, has prompted the U.S. State Department to issue a travel alert following the announcement of the death of Osama Bin Laden, according to Reuters. The State Department issued the following warning: "Given the uncertainty and volatility of the current situation, U.S. citizens in areas where events could cause anti-American violence are strongly urged to limit their travel outside of their homes and hotels and avoid mass gatherings and demonstrations."Locally, "security has been increased at Los Angeles International Airport, Ontario International Airport and Van Nuys Airport," though officials declined to comment on the precise nature of the precautions being taken, reports CBS2. An attempted bombing at LAX on New Year's Eve, 1999, is credited to Al Qaeda.
Law enforcement has also revealed plans for implementing increased security measures to protect against attacks in Los Angeles. "LAPD Deputy Chief Mike Downing, commanding officer of the Counter-Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau, said Sunday night that in the near term, there would be additional patrols around 'high-profile targets,'" according to LA Now. The LAPD say their officers "will be on the lookout for terrorist activities and possible hate crimes."
In addition to airports, our harbors and transit systems remain high-profile targets, says Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, who says enhanced security measures may be implemented. In the interim, he urges residents to be vigilant, and to report any suspicious activity immediately.