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US warns of terror threat at Ugandan airport, nearly 4 decades after deadly hijacking

The United States on Thursday warned its citizens and travelers about a “specific threat” to attack Uganda’s Entebbe International Airport by an unknown terrorist group.

A message from the U.S. Embassy there said it received information about the threat from intelligence forces and indicated that the attack could take place between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. local time.

A spokesman for Uganda's Civil Aviation Authority, Ignie Ugundura, confirmed to Reuters that the agency had alerted the airport community but did not give further details.

The news of the threat comes almost to the day 38 years ago when Israeli commandos raided the Entebbe Airport on July 4, 1976, to save passengers aboard a hijacked plane that had departed from Tel Aviv.

One hundred hostages were freed from German and Arab terrorists, but three were killed in the operation, along with an Israeli soldier. Seven terrorists and around 20 Ugandan soldiers fighting on their side were also killed, according to news reports.

The U.S. said Thursday that there is a continued threat of terrorist attacks in Uganda.

“Review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates,” the embassy said. “Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security.”