Report: After Boston, LE cooperation on terrorism improving

Report released Tuesday suggests there's been progress in how federal and local law enforcement officials share information following the Boston bombings


By Philip Marcelo 
Associated Press

BOSTON — A congressional report released Tuesday suggests there's been progress in how federal and local law enforcement officials share information following the deadly 2013 Boston Marathon bombings.

But the House Committee on Homeland Security report, released on the eve of the second anniversary of the marathon attack, suggests more improvements are needed to avoid another attack on American soil.

Boston Marathon survivor Jeff Bauman, right, is embraced by Carlos Arredondo, who helped save his life, near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Wednesday, April 15, 2015. (AP Image)
Boston Marathon survivor Jeff Bauman, right, is embraced by Carlos Arredondo, who helped save his life, near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Wednesday, April 15, 2015. (AP Image)

The report, entitled "Preventing Another Boston Marathon Bombing," says closing gaps in information-sharing is especially important with the rise of the Islamic State group and other extremist groups that have been successful at recruiting new members from the U.S. and other countries.

"The threat to the homeland from abroad and from homegrown self-inspired radicals calls for agility, and strengthening the web of relationships that exists between state, local and federal partners to form a nationwide enterprise where state and locals collaborate and complement federal counterterrorism capacity," the report says.

The report is a follow-up to the homeland security committee's March 2014 report, "The Road to Boston: Counterterrorism Challenges and Lessons from the Marathon Bombings."

It comes as Boston prepares to commemorate the April 15, 2013, bombings, which killed three people and injured 260 others, on Wednesday. The city's subdued remembrance is expected to include a moment of silence and a call to commit random acts of kindness and generosity.

Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, a Texas Republican, said the country is safer because of progress made following the committee's 2014 report.

That report had generally called for expanded cooperation between federal and local law enforcement agencies, the development of more sophisticated efforts to mitigate terrorist threats and better policies around the screening of international travelers.

McCaul is slated to discuss the new report at a Wednesday roundtable on Capitol Hill with U.S. Rep. William Keating, a Massachusetts Democrat who also sits on the Homeland Security Committee, and others.

"The second anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombings is not only a day to remember everyone directly impacted when the bombs went off, it is also a day to review the steps taken, and the steps still needed, to close the gaps that allowed this tragic event to occur," McCaul said in a statement.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press

Associated Press
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