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The Boston Globe

Nation

US says Al Qaeda affiliates surge, terrorism spikes

WASHINGTON — A surge in the number of Al Qaeda affiliates and like-minded groups in the Middle East and North Africa poses a serious threat to US interests and allies, the State Department said Wednesday in reporting a more than 40 percent increase in terrorist attacks worldwide between 2012 and 2013.

The department also singled out Iran as a major state sponsor of terrorism that continues to defy demands to prove that its atomic ambitions are peaceful — even as Washington pursues negotiations with Tehran over its nuclear program.

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