16 bomb threat calls were made to Jewish Community Centers across the U.S. Monday.
Bomb threats had been reported on Monday at various Jewish Community Centers located across multiple U.S. states. According to the authorities, there is no clear information on whether the threats were in some way connected.
Bomb Threats Reported at Multiple Jewish Centers Spread Throughout the U.S.[/tweetthis]
The target locations for the threats were Jewish Community Centers in states such as South Carolina, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina. It has been noted that the targeted states were spread from the South to the NorthEast.
Bomb threats were also reported in London, where three Jewish Schools were said to have been the target.
Some of the threat calls seemed to have been prerecorded, while others were said to have been made live. According to the Director of the Secure Community Network, Paul Goldenberg, the caller had used voice disguising technology. Goldenberg also mentioned the calls likely originated from a single source and they were primarily meant to create heavy disruption. All the threats turned out to be false.
People, ranging in the hundreds, were evacuated from the targeted centers. Many of these centers served as preschools and hosted senior adult programs. Goldenberg mentioned the evacuations were not done on the basis of urgency, but on the basis of strategies followed by the respective local authorities. Therefore, some evacuations were immediate, while others took more time.
The Jewish Community Center Association of North America, which oversees the community centers, thanked federal and local authorities for their timely action.
The past year has been witness to an increase in anti-Semitic incidents within the U.S. Experts suggest this could be linked to the Trump administration, which has been known to have many anti-Semitic supporters. They say that Trumps win could have encouraged anti-Semites and motivated them towards perpetrating such acts.
Trump himself has refused to pay attention to Jewish leaders, who have requested the President-elect to cut ties with aides, whom the leaders claim to be anti-Semitic.
Director of Strategic Performance for the JCC Association, David Posner, has stated they will cooperate, like always, with law enforcement to ensure the safety of the people who visit these centers.
16 facilities. Many of them have pre-schools in them. We have faced this before and worse. #AmYisraelChai https://t.co/VDHPnhswNq
— Martin Ritter (@MartinLRitter) January 10, 2017
According to reports from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation will meet with leaders from the Jewish community to talk about dealing with such events in the future.
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