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The following is a summary and analysis of the terrorist attacks and counter-terrorism operations that occurred during December 2013, as researched and recorded by the ICT Database Team. Among the most important events occurring this December:
- On December 4, Hassan al-Laqees, a senior member of Hezbollah, was assassinated outside his home in Beirut. Authorities said that Al-Laquees was the Chief of Rocket Development and responsible for Hezbollah’s communication and technology networks. Two previously unknown groups, the Free Sunnis of Baalbek Battalion and the Battalion of the Muslim Umma, claimed responsibility for the attack.
- On December 5, a coordinated, two-pronged bomb and gun attack killed 56 people and wounded 216 others at the Yemeni Defence Ministry in Sana’a. On December 5, Ansar Al-Sharia, an offshoot of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed responsibility for the attack. In an unusual move, on December 22, Qassim al-Raimi, the leader of AQAP, apologized for attacking the hospital within the Defence Ministry during the attack.
- On December 22, a pressure cooker bomb exploded on a bus in the Tel Aviv suburb of Bat Yam. One police officer was lightly wounded in the explosion. The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) said that the bomb had contained two kilograms of improvised explosives surrounded by nails and screws. It was assembled in a pressure cooker and activated by mobile phone. Islamic Jihad was linked to the attack.
- On December 25, three separate bombings in Baghdad killed 38 people and wounded 70 others, as militants targeted Christians celebrating Christmas festivities. According to the authorities, the first bomb exploded in a crowded outdoor market in the Christian district of Dora. Several minutes later a bomb planted in a parked car exploded outside a nearby church as worshipers were leaving Christmas Mass. No group claimed responsibility but authorities blamed Al-Qaeda in Iraq.
- On December 29, 18 people were killed and 44 others injured when a suicide bomber attacked the Volgograd-1 train station in southern Russia. A second suicide attack took place the following morning, December 30, at 8:30 local time in the Dzerzhinsky district in Volgograd. The bombing targeted a No. 1233 trolleybus of route 15A, which connects a suburb to Volgograd’s downtown area, as it was passing one of the city’s markets. The attack killed 16 people, including a child, and injured 41 others. Valiat Dagestan, a militant group linked to Doku Umarov was linked to the attack.
Click here for the full ICT Database Report – December, in PDF format.