U.S. defense intelligence chief predicts increased Islamic State attacks

Reuters News
Posted: Feb 08, 2016 3:44 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Islamic State is likely to "increase the pace and lethality" of its transnational attacks, U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency Director Vincent Stewart said on Monday.

Speaking to a security conference, Stewart linked his warning to the extremist movement's establishment of "emerging branches" in Mali, Tunisia, Somalia, Bangladesh and Indonesia.

"And it wouldn't surprise me to see them further extend" operations from the Sinai Peninsula deeper into Egypt, he said.

"Last year, Daesh remained entrenched on Iraqi and Syrian battlefields and expanded globally to Libya, Sinai, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and the Caucasus," Stewart said, using a derisive Arabic acronym for Islamic State. "Daesh is likely to increase the pace and lethality of its transnational attacks."

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(Reporting by Jonathan Landay. Editing by Warren Strobel and Eric Beech)