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Anti-technology group attacks university researchers

Two professors injured in Mexico; group opposed to nanotechnology research says it has more targets in mind

The attacks already have spurred some universities to take extra security precautions.

An anti-technology group calling itself “Individuals Tending Toward the Savage” (translated) was responsible for a package bomb that injured two university professors just outside Mexico City, a state prosecutor said Aug. 9. The group reportedly is responsible for other attacks in Europe, leading to speculation that it might target U.S. universities, too.

Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office announced that a suspicious envelope presumably containing explosives also was found at Mexico’s National Polytechnical Institute on Aug. 9, though it didn’t detonate.

The office has opened investigations into both incidents, it said in a statement.

The Aug. 8 explosion at the Monterrey Technological Institute’s campus on the outskirts of the Mexican capital injured two professors, one of whom was involved in robotics research. Neither suffered life-threatening injuries, but both suffered second- and third-degree burns.

Mexico State Attorney General Alfredo Castillo said at a news conference that the group’s involvement was identified from a partially destroyed note found at the scene.

Mexico State prosecutors’ spokesman Sonia Davila said authorities are investigating the authenticity of the manifesto, but said its description of how the dynamite-stuffed pipe-bomb was constructed matched evidence found at the scene of the small explosion on the outskirts of the capital. Officials had not revealed details of the device that injured two professors.

Castillo described the device as “rudimentary, one could say homemade.” He said the group opposes experiments with nanotechnology and has staged attacks on academics before.

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