Dak Lak armed group connected to US-based terrorists

By Pham Du   June 22, 2023 | 06:02 am PT
Dak Lak armed group connected to US-based terrorists
Several suspects involved in attacks into People's Committee offices in Dak Lak are arrested, June 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Hang
The armed group that attacked two government headquarters in Dak Lak Province earlier this month has connections with terrorists based in the U.S., the homeland security department says.

Major General Pham Ngoc Viet, head of the Department of Homeland Security at the Ministry of Public Security, said on Tuesday that one of the suspects involved in the attacks on the People’s Committee offices of Ea Tieu and Ea Ktur communes is a member of a terrorist organization based in the U.S.

This person was instructed to infiltrate Vietnam and plan the attack, Viet told the United Nations High-Level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism Agencies of Member States in New York.

Viet said the attacks on June 11, which resulted in nine deaths, two injuries and three hostages, were "organized terrorism."

Vietnam has never experienced international terrorism before, but certain risk factors do threaten national security here, he said.

First, Vietnam has targets that may interest terrorists, such as foreign diplomatic headquarters.

Second, there are risks related to the movement of IS forces that may have reasons to come to Southeast Asia from the Middle East.

Third, terrorist groups are making use of technologies and social media to spread their extreme ideologies across the globe, making Vietnam highly susceptible due to the country’s high number of Internet users.

Fourth, Vietnamese reactionaries and other groups with extreme ideologies have taken advantage of ethnic and religious issues in the country in order to train people to commit terrorist acts in Vietnam.

Vietnam strongly condemns all individuals and organizations that have harbored, supported and/or commanded those involved in the Dak Lak attacks, Viet said.

Vietnam calls for relevant countries and international organizations to support and cooperate with the country’s investigation into the acts of terrorism. He also asked that all bodies involved come together to prevent and combat similar acts in the future.

As of Tuesday, 74 suspects had been arrested for alleged involvement in the attacks, including most of those accused of being the group’s leaders.

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