Missing radioactive material in Iraq prompts nationwide search, ISIS fears

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prompts nationwide search, ISIS fears
Published February 17, 2016 FoxNews.com
A desperate hunt for “highly dangerous” radioactive material is on in Iraq, where officials fear it could have fallen into the hands of ISIS, according to a government official in Baghdad.

The material, stored in a case the size of a laptop, disappeared from a storage facility near the southern city of Basra in November, Reuters reported. It was in the possession of Houston-based oil industry contractor Weatherford, according to a document obtained by the news agency.

The document describes “the theft of a highly dangerous radioactive source of Ir-192 with highly radioactive activity belonging to SGS from a depot belonging to Weatherford in the Rafidhia area of Basra province.”

The report comes on the heels of news that the Islamic terrorist organization has chemical weapons that it has used on the Kurds.

A spokesman for Iraq’s environment ministry told Reuters he could not discuss the issue due to national security concerns. A Weatherford spokesman in Iraq also declined to comment.

The missing material is used to test flaws in pipelines in a process called industrial gamma radiography, and was owned by Istanbul-based SGS Turkey, according to the document and officials.

A senior environment ministry official based in Basra, who declined to be named as he is not authorized to speak publicly, told Reuters the device contained up to 10 grams of Ir-192 “capsules,” a radioactive isotope of iridium also used to treat cancer.

The material is classed as a Category 2 radioactive source by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and could be lethal for someone exposed to it for a period of hours. Reuters could not say how potent the material is, which would depend on its strength and age.

In the past, quantities of Ir-192 have vanished in the United States and other countries, raising concerns of a “dirty bomb,” or a conventional explosive paced with lower-grade nuclear material.

“We are afraid the radioactive element will fall into the hands of Daesh,” a senior security official with knowledge of the theft told Reuters, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

A security official told Reuters the perpetrators may have known what they were doing, noting there were “no broken locks, no smashed doors and no evidence of forced entry” at the facility.

A spokesman for Basra operations command said army, police and intelligence forces were working “day and night” to locate the material.

Besides the risk of a dirty bomb, the radioactive material could cause harm simply by being left exposed in a public place for several days, said David Albright, a physicist and president of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security.

“If they left it in some crowded place, that would be more of the risk. If they kept it together but without shielding,” he said. “Certainly it’s not insignificant. You could cause some panic with this. They would want to get this back.”

On Tuesday, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed that ISIS has manufactured and deployed mustard gas in Iraq and Syria.

Clapper did not elaborate on where and when the chemical attacks occurred, though there has been mounting evidence the terror group was experimenting with chemical weapons.

“[The Syrian government] has used chemicals against the opposition on multiple occasions since Syria joined the Chemical Weapons Convention. ISIL has also used toxic chemicals in Iraq and Syria, including the blister agent Sulfur mustard,” Clapper said in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Fox News previously reported on ISIS’ potential experimentation with chemical weapons. Photos taken by the Kurds in northern Iraq last summer and reviewed by Fox News showed burns and blistering on skin following exposure to “odorless, colorless” agents absorbed through the clothing.

pts nationwide search, ISIS fears

prompts nationwide search, ISIS fears
Published February 17, 2016 FoxNews.com

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A desperate hunt for “highly dangerous” radioactive material is on in Iraq, where officials fear it could have fallen into the hands of ISIS, according to a government official in Baghdad.

The material, stored in a case the size of a laptop, disappeared from a storage facility near the southern city of Basra in November, Reuters reported. It was in the possession of Houston-based oil industry contractor Weatherford, according to a document obtained by the news agency.

The document describes “the theft of a highly dangerous radioactive source of Ir-192 with highly radioactive activity belonging to SGS from a depot belonging to Weatherford in the Rafidhia area of Basra province.”

The report comes on the heels of news that the Islamic terrorist organization has chemical weapons that it has used on the Kurds.

A spokesman for Iraq’s environment ministry told Reuters he could not discuss the issue due to national security concerns. A Weatherford spokesman in Iraq also declined to comment.

The missing material is used to test flaws in pipelines in a process called industrial gamma radiography, and was owned by Istanbul-based SGS Turkey, according to the document and officials.

A senior environment ministry official based in Basra, who declined to be named as he is not authorized to speak publicly, told Reuters the device contained up to 10 grams of Ir-192 “capsules,” a radioactive isotope of iridium also used to treat cancer.

The material is classed as a Category 2 radioactive source by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and could be lethal for someone exposed to it for a period of hours. Reuters could not say how potent the material is, which would depend on its strength and age.

In the past, quantities of Ir-192 have vanished in the United States and other countries, raising concerns of a “dirty bomb,” or a conventional explosive paced with lower-grade nuclear material.

“We are afraid the radioactive element will fall into the hands of Daesh,” a senior security official with knowledge of the theft told Reuters, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

A security official told Reuters the perpetrators may have known what they were doing, noting there were “no broken locks, no smashed doors and no evidence of forced entry” at the facility.

A spokesman for Basra operations command said army, police and intelligence forces were working “day and night” to locate the material.

Besides the risk of a dirty bomb, the radioactive material could cause harm simply by being left exposed in a public place for several days, said David Albright, a physicist and president of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security.

“If they left it in some crowded place, that would be more of the risk. If they kept it together but without shielding,” he said. “Certainly it’s not insignificant. You could cause some panic with this. They would want to get this back.”

On Tuesday, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed that ISIS has manufactured and deployed mustard gas in Iraq and Syria.

Clapper did not elaborate on where and when the chemical attacks occurred, though there has been mounting evidence the terror group was experimenting with chemical weapons.

“[The Syrian government] has used chemicals against the opposition on multiple occasions since Syria joined the Chemical Weapons Convention. ISIL has also used toxic chemicals in Iraq and Syria, including the blister agent Sulfur mustard,” Clapper said in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Fox News previously reported on ISIS’ potential experimentation with chemical weapons. Photos taken by the Kurds in northern Iraq last summer and reviewed by Fox News showed burns and blistering on skin following exposure to “odorless, colorless” agents absorbed through the clothing.

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A desperate hunt for “highly dangerous” radioactive material is on in Iraq, where officials fear it could have fallen into the hands of ISIS, according to a government official in Baghdad.

The material, stored in a case the size of a laptop, disappeared from a storage facility near the southern city of Basra in November, Reuters reported. It was in the possession of Houston-based oil industry contractor Weatherford, according to a document obtained by the news agency.

The document describes “the theft of a highly dangerous radioactive source of Ir-192 with highly radioactive activity belonging to SGS from a depot belonging to Weatherford in the Rafidhia area of Basra province.”

The report comes on the heels of news that the Islamic terrorist organization has chemical weapons that it has used on the Kurds.

A spokesman for Iraq’s environment ministry told Reuters he could not discuss the issue due to national security concerns. A Weatherford spokesman in Iraq also declined to comment.

The missing material is used to test flaws in pipelines in a process called industrial gamma radiography, and was owned by Istanbul-based SGS Turkey, according to the document and officials.

A senior environment ministry official based in Basra, who declined to be named as he is not authorized to speak publicly, told Reuters the device contained up to 10 grams of Ir-192 “capsules,” a radioactive isotope of iridium also used to treat cancer.

The material is classed as a Category 2 radioactive source by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and could be lethal for someone exposed to it for a period of hours. Reuters could not say how potent the material is, which would depend on its strength and age.

In the past, quantities of Ir-192 have vanished in the United States and other countries, raising concerns of a “dirty bomb,” or a conventional explosive paced with lower-grade nuclear material.

“We are afraid the radioactive element will fall into the hands of Daesh,” a senior security official with knowledge of the theft told Reuters, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

A security official told Reuters the perpetrators may have known what they were doing, noting there were “no broken locks, no smashed doors and no evidence of forced entry” at the facility.

A spokesman for Basra operations command said army, police and intelligence forces were working “day and night” to locate the material.

Besides the risk of a dirty bomb, the radioactive material could cause harm simply by being left exposed in a public place for several days, said David Albright, a physicist and president of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security.

“If they left it in some crowded place, that would be more of the risk. If they kept it together but without shielding,” he said. “Certainly it’s not insignificant. You could cause some panic with this. They would want to get this back.”

On Tuesday, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed that ISIS has manufactured and deployed mustard gas in Iraq and Syria.

Clapper did not elaborate on where and when the chemical attacks occurred, though there has been mounting evidence the terror group was experimenting with chemical weapons.

“[The Syrian government] has used chemicals against the opposition on multiple occasions since Syria joined the Chemical Weapons Convention. ISIL has also used toxic chemicals in Iraq and Syria, including the blister agent Sulfur mustard,” Clapper said in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Fox News previously reported on ISIS’ potential experimentation with chemical weapons. Photos taken by the Kurds in northern Iraq last summer and reviewed by Fox News showed burns and blistering on skin following exposure to “odorless, colorless” agents absorbed through the clothing.

prompts nationwide search, ISIS fears
Published February 17, 2016 FoxNews.com

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A desperate hunt for “highly dangerous” radioactive material is on in Iraq, where officials fear it could have fallen into the hands of ISIS, according to a government official in Baghdad.

The material, stored in a case the size of a laptop, disappeared from a storage facility near the southern city of Basra in November, Reuters reported. It was in the possession of Houston-based oil industry contractor Weatherford, according to a document obtained by the news agency.

The document describes “the theft of a highly dangerous radioactive source of Ir-192 with highly radioactive activity belonging to SGS from a depot belonging to Weatherford in the Rafidhia area of Basra province.”

The report comes on the heels of news that the Islamic terrorist organization has chemical weapons that it has used on the Kurds.

A spokesman for Iraq’s environment ministry told Reuters he could not discuss the issue due to national security concerns. A Weatherford spokesman in Iraq also declined to comment.

The missing material is used to test flaws in pipelines in a process called industrial gamma radiography, and was owned by Istanbul-based SGS Turkey, according to the document and officials.

A senior environment ministry official based in Basra, who declined to be named as he is not authorized to speak publicly, told Reuters the device contained up to 10 grams of Ir-192 “capsules,” a radioactive isotope of iridium also used to treat cancer.

The material is classed as a Category 2 radioactive source by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and could be lethal for someone exposed to it for a period of hours. Reuters could not say how potent the material is, which would depend on its strength and age.

In the past, quantities of Ir-192 have vanished in the United States and other countries, raising concerns of a “dirty bomb,” or a conventional explosive paced with lower-grade nuclear material.

“We are afraid the radioactive element will fall into the hands of Daesh,” a senior security official with knowledge of the theft told Reuters, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

A security official told Reuters the perpetrators may have known what they were doing, noting there were “no broken locks, no smashed doors and no evidence of forced entry” at the facility.

A spokesman for Basra operations command said army, police and intelligence forces were working “day and night” to locate the material.

Besides the risk of a dirty bomb, the radioactive material could cause harm simply by being left exposed in a public place for several days, said David Albright, a physicist and president of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security.

“If they left it in some crowded place, that would be more of the risk. If they kept it together but without shielding,” he said. “Certainly it’s not insignificant. You could cause some panic with this. They would want to get this back.”

On Tuesday, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed that ISIS has manufactured and deployed mustard gas in Iraq and Syria.

Clapper did not elaborate on where and when the chemical attacks occurred, though there has been mounting evidence the terror group was experimenting with chemical weapons.

“[The Syrian government] has used chemicals against the opposition on multiple occasions since Syria joined the Chemical Weapons Convention. ISIL has also used toxic chemicals in Iraq and Syria, including the blister agent Sulfur mustard,” Clapper said in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Fox News previously reported on ISIS’ potential experimentation with chemical weapons. Photos taken by the Kurds in northern Iraq last summer and reviewed by Fox News showed burns and blistering on skin following exposure to “odorless, colorless” agents absorbed through the clothing.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Okay so with this information now tucked neatly away in our brains Should not now be the time to start pushing the guy in the Oval Office to get off his ass and start doing something more serious about protecting this nation and We the people? He has time to attack Trump but no time to truly attack ISIS? This is the problem we have seen for nearly 8 years. Obama has plenty of time to golf, invoke race issues, drag Sharpton around etc, etc But ISIS is still looming and he is using a sling shot to try and shut them down.Look I know I am not alone here and you know what? I miss the hell out of W Yes George Bush. Because Bush would have been lighting ISIS up many times over by now. I would rather have a president in office willing to do all he could to protect America and her people versus a  president who enjoys the sensation he gets from sitting on his thumbs. Excuse my crudeness but I have had it and I will ask you all to excuse me but I will not apologize for being honest and calling it like I see it. Obama is doing nothing in the grand scheme of things concerning ISIS But he sure finds time to take shots at the GOP front runner. And since I am on a rant lets Drag Hillary in here as well and her sit, bark and win a bone BS She is a big fat liar and I mean that from the bottom of my heart. Both she and Obama are the type that get off on dividing the people they are bad, Bad people who only seek power , they do not truly care about Americans its all about the office and they say and do anything to get what they want. Obama has spent this nation to near death and he will tell us all when confronted that everything is fine. If so why the hell are we in debt to China, Why are there no jobs, Hell even the poor on SSI did not get a raise because we are broke So how about Obama worry about us for a change instead of trying to stack the deck against us who don’t agree with his form of politics. Thanks for hanging in there I did not set out to clear my mind today but it just sort of happened,  God Bless America We truly need it.

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