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Postal Warning on Letter Bombs

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An alert to all postal stations to be on the lookout for “terrorist letter bombs in the mail stream” was published in the Postal Bulletin of the U.S. Postal Service here. The alert contains a detailed description of letter bombs “addressed to Israeli officials in this country or to Americans of known close ties to Israel.”

The alert, in the Nov. 29 Postal Bulletin states: “Although most of the letter bombs which have been sent by terrorists to targets in the United States have been carried in the mails, none of these bombs has exploded except in the process of being opened. The two types encountered to date each require that the insert be removed from the wrapper for the detonating mechanism to be activated. In their unopened condition, these letter bombs appear capable of withstanding the rigors of handling without detonation.”

The notice stated that “letter bombs intercepted in the United States addressed to Israeli officials in this country or to Americans of known close ties to Israel were mailed in the Netherlands, Malaysia and Greece. The bombs were enclosed in conventional plain or air mail envelopes of different colors and sizes with addresses both typed and handwritten and contained thin, flat strips of plastic explosive wrapped in sheets of letter paper, making a packet of the thickness of a bulky letter.” The notice reported that more recent bombs addressed to British officials and mailed from Paris were contained in thin paperback books.

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