WASHINGTON - Al-Qaida's core organization is likely incapable of carrying out another mass-casualty attack on the scale of Sept. 11, 2001, US intelligence and counterterrorism officials said on Friday.
US government experts also believe that the likelihood of an attack using chemical, biological, atomic or radiological weapons over the next year was not high, said Robert Cardillo, deputy director of US National Intelligence.
Cardillo and other US officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, described these assessments on a conference call with journalists billed as an opportunity for government experts to voice their assessments of al-Qaida's potency a year after the killing of Osama bin Laden in a US commando raid.
Cardillo said the al-Qaida "core" organization that bin Laden created has suffered strategic setbacks due to the outbreak of "Arab Spring" protests and rebellions in Islamic countries, which have not spread great sympathy for al-Qaida's hardline and violent brand of Islam.
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