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Homeland Security

Statement by Secretary Johnson on the United Kingdom’s Decision to Raise Their Threat Level

Release Date: 
August 29, 2014

For Immediate Release
DHS Press Office
Contact: 202-282-8010

Today, the United Kingdom raised the domestic threat level from international terrorism from “Substantial” to “Severe,” related to developments in Syria and Iraq. I have spoken to U.K. Home Secretary Theresa May about these changes. 
 
At present, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the FBI are unaware of any specific, credible threat to the U.S. homeland from ISIL. Plainly, however, violent extremists who support ISIL have demonstrated the intent and capability to target American citizens overseas, and ISIL constitutes an active and serious threat within the region.   
 
Additionally, in response to recent threats generally from overseas, the Department of Homeland Security over the past several weeks has taken a number of steps to enhance aviation security at overseas airports with direct flights to the United States, and the United Kingdom and other nations have followed with similar enhancements. This government, in close collaboration with our international partners, has also taken a series of steps to track foreign fighters who travel in and out of Syria, and we are contemplating additional security measures concerning foreign fighters. Some of the security measures will be visible to the public and some understandably will be unseen.  
 
At the same time, the Department of Homeland Security is mindful of the potential for homegrown violent extremism inspired by radical ideology overseas, and, both through law enforcement and community outreach, we are taking steps to counter that potential threat. 
 
The Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. government are deeply concerned about the current situation in Iraq and Syria. We will continue to evaluate and adopt serious and prudent homeland security measures as the situation warrants.

Review Date: 
August 29, 2014
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