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Friday, 22 May 2020

Gunman's thwarted attempt to storm Corpus Christi naval base was terror-related say FBI, as they now hunt for a SECOND suspect

FBI investigators said the shooting incident at a Texas naval air station Thursday morning was a 'terror' attack and revealed that a second person of interest may be at-large. 
The gunman was first reported near the base around 6.15am when he tried to speed through a gate at the Naval Air Station Corpus Christi. 
Authorities said vehicle barriers stopped the car, but the man proceeded to open fire.    
According to ABC News, FBI investigators have already determined that the shooting 'is terrorism related' and authorities are in search of a second person-of-interest. 

'The public should remain calm, and if you see something, say something,' FBI agents said.  
FBI investigators said the shooting incident at a Texas naval air station Thursday morning was a 'terror' attack
FBI investigators said the shooting incident at a Texas naval air station Thursday morning was a 'terror' attack
Officials said the shooter was in the vicinity of the North Gate around 6.15am and immediately locked down the base
Officials said the shooter was in the vicinity of the North Gate around 6.15am and immediately locked down the base

The incident prompted an immediate lockdown of the facility and the Navy updated the public on Facebook with a warning: 'If you are in or near the North Gate get out and away to safety. Execute lockdown procedures - remain indoors and away from windows.' 
At the same time, Texas A&M University located nearby asked any students on campus to remain indoors and away from windows. 
A short time later, the shooter was 'neutralized', the US Navy Information Office said in statement. The deceased suspect has not been identified.  
One security force member was injured during the incident, the Navy said. 
According to the Navy Times, the sailor's protective vest stopped the bullet. The sailor was hospitalized but is expected to be released within 24 hours. 
A short time later, the shooter was 'neutralized', base officials said in a statement. Police at the scene of the incident Thursday morning
A short time later, the shooter was 'neutralized', base officials said in a statement. Police at the scene of the incident Thursday morning
The shooter was reported at the North Gate (star, far right), according to Navy officials
The shooter was reported at the North Gate (star, far right), according to Navy officials 
The station had a nearly identical incident in February 2019 when a man drove a stolen vehicle through a checkpoint at the naval air station before crashing it along Ocean Drive. That suspect was also fatally shot. 
In another incident at the base in 2019, a man pleaded guilty to destruction of US government property and possession of a stolen firearm for ramming his truck into a barricade at the Corpus Christi station.
According to the Navy, the facility is located on the Texas Gulf Coast approximately 220 miles from Houston. 
The base employs more than 9,700 people full-time, including 1,900 active duty Navy and Marine personnel. 
The Corpus Christi shooting comes just days after Attorney General William Barr linked Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, a gunman who killed three sailors during a December 2019 attack at the Pensacola Naval Air Station in Florida, to al-Qaida. 
Law enforcement officials discovered contacts between Alshamrani and operatives of al-Qaida after FBI technicians succeeded in breaking into two cellphones that had previously been locked and that the shooter, a Saudi Air Force officer, had tried to destroy before he was killed by a sheriff's deputy. 
'We now have a clearer understanding of Alshamrani's associations and activities in the years, months and days leading up to his attack,' Barr said at a news conference on Tuesday.  
Law enforcement officials had previously left no doubt that Alshamrani was motivated by jihadist ideology, saying he visited a New York City memorial to the attacks of September 11, 2001, over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. 
Authorities said Alshamrani also posted anti-American and anti-Israeli messages on social media just hours before the shooting.
Separately, AQAP, al-Qaida´s branch in Yemen, released a video claiming the attack. AQAP has long been considered the global network´s most dangerous branch.


Pensacola base gunman coordinated with al-Qaida

Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, who was shot dead by law enforcement after he opened fire on the Naval Air Base Station in Pensacola on December 6, laid out his intentions in a note dated September 6.
He murdered three US sailors and injured eight others at the base. 
The 21-year-old military trainee's note was found by the FBI on one of his two iPhones after the agency spent months breaking through the encryption protecting the devices. 
The FBI released screenshots of the note on Monday and revealed they discovered Alshamrani had been in contact with al Qaeda operatives.
Attorney General Bill Barr on Monday announced that the FBI had finally gained access to Alshamrani's two iPhones after months of working to break their encryption. 
Alshamrani had attempted to destroy one of the phones by firing a bullet at it before he was killed. 

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