New York officials call suspicious packages terrorism


New York: New York authorities are calling the sending of a pipe bomb to CNN headquarters in Manhattan’s Time Warner building an act of terrorism, although they ruled out any “specific threats” in the city.

At a joint press conference with New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, state Governor Andrew Cuomo and security personnel, Cuomo said that given the profile of the incidents that have occurred in recent hours it “we wouldn’t be surprised” if more such devices turned up, Efe reported.

“Terrorism only works if you let it work. What they are trying to do is scare us and destabilize us. We will not allow that to happen. We will not allow these terrorist thugs to change the way we live our lives,” the governor said.

“This was clearly an act of terror attempting to undermine the free press and leaders of this country through acts of violence,” De Blasio said, adding “We’ve seen worse. And we will not be intimidated.”

Both the mayor and the governor said that there are no credible or specific threats against the city, but they emphasized that they will reinforce security at key media locations and other important sites.

New York police chief James O’Neill said that the package found in the Time Warner building apparently contained a “live explosive device” and an envelope containing “white powder,” and both are being investigated.

Authorities said that this and other devices sent to former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama and Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz were homemade bombs.

John Miller, the deputy New York police commissioner for counter-terrorism, said that “It appears that an individual or individuals sent out multiple similar packages,” including one received at the New York-suburb residence of magnate George Soros, a bomb that he said was “proactively detonated” and sent to the FBI laboratory.

The US Secret Service on Wednesday denied a media report indicating it had intercepted a suspicious package addressed to the White House.

CNN had reported earlier, citing a law enforcement official, that a package addressed to the presidential mansion in Washington DC and apparently containing a pipe bomb had been intercepted at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington.

That report came after the US Secret Service said in a statement that it had recovered one package addressed to Hillary Clinton in Westchester County late Tuesday and another addressed to Obama’s residence in Washington.

The White House issued a statement condemning the attempted attacks on key Democratic Party figures and their supporters.

“We condemn the attempted violent attacks recently made against President Obama, President Clinton, Secretary Clinton and other public figures. These terrorizing acts are despicable, and anyone responsible will be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” President Donald Trump’s administration said.