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Morning Security Brief: Progress Report on Chemical Weapons in Syria, Supply Chain Risks, and Nigerian College Attacked

By Teresa Anderson

► The Syrian government has been “businesslike and efficient” in the work that is intended to set the stage for the destruction of its chemical weapons stockpile, according to an article in The Washington Post. A team from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), a partner organization of the United Nations, will arrive in Damascus tomorrow. The team will spend a week in talks with the Syrian government before beginning a survey of the nation’s chemical weapons.

► The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued a report urging the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to periodically assess risk at foreign ports to protect the supply chain of cargo coming into the United States. In the report, the GAO noted that the DHS has developed models to assess risk at foreign ports. However, the agencies within DHS have varying approaches to reassessing this risk. For example, the U.S. Coast Guard annually updates its risk profiles of foreign ports but Customs and Border Protection has not updated its risk assessments since 2005.

► Gunmen opened fire at an agricultural college in rural Nigeria yesterday, killing more than 40 students as they slept. According to The New York Times, the attack was the second massacre of civilians carried out by the extremist group Boko Haram in less than two weeks. Boko Haram has singled out “Western-style” educational facilities for attack. The group believes that education not based on the Koran is sinful. The United Kingdom has declared Boko Haram a terrorist group. However, the United States has not made such a designation, though it has named leading members of the group as terrorists.
 

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