Latin America: Terrorism Issues [February 23, 2011]   [open pdf - 289KB]

"U.S. attention to terrorism in Latin America intensified in the aftermath of the September 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, with an increase in bilateral and regional cooperation. In its 2009 Country Reports on Terrorism (issued in August 2010), the State Department maintained that terrorism in the region was primarily perpetrated by terrorist organizations in Colombia and by the remnants of radical leftist Andean groups. Overall, however, the report maintained that the threat of a transnational terrorist attack remained low for most countries in the hemisphere. [...] U.S. officials have expressed concerns over the past several years about Venezuela's lack of cooperation on antiterrorism efforts, its relations with Iran, and potential support for Colombian terrorist groups. Concerns about Iran's increasing activities in Latin America center on Iran's attempts to circumvent U.N. and U.S. sanctions, as well as on its ties to the radical Lebanon-based Islamic group Hezbollah. Allegations have linked Hezbollah to two bombings in Argentina: the 1992 bombing of the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires that killed 30 people and the 1994 bombing of the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association (AMIA) in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people. The State Department terrorism report maintains that the United States remains concerned that sympathizers of Hezbollah and the Sunni Muslim Palestinian group Hamas are raising funds among the sizable Middle Eastern communities in the tri-border area [TBA] of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay, but stated that there was no corroborated information that these or other Islamic extremist groups had an operational presence in the TBA or elsewhere in the hemisphere."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RS21049
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