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US Homeland Security Chief Defends Terror Threat Report - 2004-08-04


US officials have acknowledged that some of the information behind Sunday's terror warning in New York and Washington was two to three years old, but they say the threat is still serious and defend the decision to impose new security measures.

Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said (Tuesday) some of the information about al-Qaida's apparent surveillance of financial targets now under alert was updated as late as January. He also noted that the terrorist network is believed to plan its attacks well in advance.

Intelligence officials said information about the potential targets was found during raids last week in Pakistan, but the actual al-Qaida 's surveillance of financial institutions was conducted mostly before the attacks of September 11th, 2001.

Information for this report is provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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