Friday, October 24, 2014

Global Impact: Suspect Powder Received by a Number of Western Consulates in Istanbul

According to Reuters, packets of an unidentified yellow powder were sent to the Canadian, US, Belgian and German consulates in Istanbul on Friday (October 24), prompting security alerts following two Islamic attacks in Canada this week.
One Canadian consulate employee came directly into contact with the suspicious package and six others had indirect exposure, Turkey's disaster management agency AFAD said in a statement. Nine people were hospitalized as a precaution.
Teams decontaminated the Canadian and Belgium consulates and were working on cleaning the German mission, AFAD spokesman Dogan Eskinat said.
A US Embassy spokesman confirmed that the Consulate General in Istanbul also received an envelope containing a "suspicious" powder."
COMMENT: There is no immediate diagnosis as to what the unidentified powder was. Samples were sent to laboratories in the capital of Ankara for analysis.
Other consulates and embassies were reviewing their security protocols.
Canadian consulates and embassies overseas have been on heightened alert this week after two attacks in Canada.
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, 32, a Canadian citizen and convert to Islam, shot and killed a soldier stationed at the National War Memorial in Ottawa on Wednesday (October 22) before running into the nearby parliament buildings. He was shot and killed by guards.
Two days earlier, Martin Rouleau, a 25-year-old convert to Islam, drove over two Canadian soldiers, killing one, in Québec, police said. He also was shot and killed by Canadian police. 

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