The FBI has seen an increase in reported threats in the US amid the Israel-Hamas war, Director Christopher Wray told reporters on a call Sunday.
“Here in the US, we cannot and do not discount the possibility that Hamas or other foreign terrorist organizations could exploit the conflict to call on their supporters to conduct attacks on our own soil,” Wray said.
Most threats have been deemed not credible by the agency, a senior FBI official said during the call, but Jewish and Muslim institutions have been targeted.
The FBI, along with the Department of Homeland Security, last week issued a public service announcement and a bulletin to law enforcement agencies around the US warning of possible threats related to the war abroad.
The FBI official noted that over the past week, the agency has seen an uptick in rhetoric targeting “Jewish people as well as Muslim institutions.”
FBI officials have also been meeting with leaders in Jewish and Muslim communities across the US as the threats increase. The goal of these meetings, both in person and over the phone, has been to tell leaders “if you see something that concerns you, please let us know because we want to keep you safe,” the FBI official said.
Wray also noted that the FBI is working to help “identify all Americans who’ve been impacted in (Israel), including those who remain unaccounted for.”
Fifteen Americans are still unaccounted for after the attacks, according to the State Department, and over two dozen Americans were killed.
“Our victim services specialists are working closely with victims and their families, here and abroad,” the director added.