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FBI-DHS Hazardous Materials Advisory

Western Hemisphere

The primary mission of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is to prevent an act of terrorism against the United States of America.  The threat posed by chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) materials is well known to national defense and national security professionals.  The FBI’s foray into programs countering CBRN issues trace back to nearly three decades ago.  Beginning in 1995, in the aftermath of a sarin release in the Tokyo subway system by members of the religious terrorist group Aum Shinrikyo that caused almost 1000 injuries and 12 deaths, the FBI steadily increased resources devoted to preventing CBRN terrorism.  In 2006, these efforts culminated in the creation of the FBI Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Directorate to address CBRN terrorism.  From its very inception, the WMD Directorate has been committed to leveraging all of the United States’ public and private capabilities to effectively prevent WMD attacks, especially through aggressive outreach programs.