Chicago, IL – Two suspicious packages found on cargo flights from the Middle East were addressed to religious institutions in Chicago, the FBI said today.
“All churches, synagogues and mosques in the Chicago area should be vigilant for any unsolicited or unexpected packages, especially those originating from overseas locations,” the FBI said.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Chicago said it had advised local synagogues to be on alert.
The package contained a toner cartridge with wires and powder, prompting authorities to search several flights that had landed at U.S. airports.
A spokeswoman for the federation said it had received a warning this morning, but would not say from whom.
“We were told that synagogues should be on the alert,” the spokeswoman said, adding that the federation was “taking appropriate precautions” and was “advising our local synagogues to do likewise.”
CNN reported that sources believe explosives were intended for Chicago synagogues. Frances Fragos Townsend, former Homeland Security adviser in the Bush administration, said American intelligence had been informed within the last 24 hours about devices on flights from the Middle East intended for synagogues in Chicago.