State Department: Iran still world’s top terror sponsor

The US State Department released its annual report on global terror on Friday, and its findings for 2015 revealed that Iran remains the leading state sponsor of terrorism.

The report detailed how Iran is active in the fighting in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, and is involved in violent Shi'ite attacks in Bahrain. Bahrain has accused Tehran of giving weapons to Shi'ite terrorists who launched bomb attacks on security forces, reports BBC.

In Syria, Iran has directly sent troops to prop up Bashar al-Assad's regime, and likewise it has deployed its Lebanese Shi'ite terror proxy Hezbollah to fight as well. Iran also is a major source of funds for Hamas.

The State Department report is ironic in light of the fact that US Secretary of State John Kerry fervently pressed through the controversial nuclear deal with Iran last July, which critics warned essentially paves Tehran's road to a nuclear arsenal.

Opponents of the deal specifically noted that it did not address Iran's role as the world's leading state sponsor of terror, in a state of affairs that the report shows has not changed as a result of the deal.

The State Department report also spoke about specific terrorist organizations, and determined that Islamic State (ISIS) is the largest single terror threat in the world.

US President Barack Obama has long been criticized for his lackadaisical approach to the terror group, which he once termed a "JV team."

ISIS has gained affiliates and supporters throughout the Middle East, Africa and Asia, the report noted, while saying that even as the jihadists lost ground in Iraq and Syria they gained strength in Libya and Egypt.

A separate UN statement warned ISIS is focusing on international civilian targets, pointing out that the group has launched attacks in 11 countries in the last six months, not counting its activities in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan and Libya.

According to data compiled by the University of Maryland and presented in the State Department report, over 28,300 people died in 2015, while 35,300 others were wounded in 11,774 terrorist attacks worldwide.

The report said the terror deaths worldwide dropped by 14% last year compared to 2014, although the State Department added that attacks and deaths increased in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, the Philippines, Syria and Turkey.

Data has shown that global war deaths have doubled under Obama and his hands-off foreign policy approach, despite his winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 shortly after taking office.

The terror threat "continued to evolve rapidly in 2015, becoming increasingly decentralized and diffuse," read the report. It added that terrorists exploited discontent in countries "where avenues for free and peaceful expression of opinion were blocked."

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/213221

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