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GAO study faults State Department for lax security practices overseas

Washington (CNN)State Department efforts to protect thousands of diplomatic personnel and their families at residences, schools and other soft overseas targets has been weak, the U.S. Government Accountability Office found in a new study released Thursday.

The study cites multiple “vulnerabilities” in high threat areas. The State Department has built many new embassies and consulates, and enhanced security measures at others, since the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania East Africa. But the increased security at U.S. diplomatic posts has made areas where diplomatic personnel and their families congregate, such as residences, schools and churches, more attractive “soft targets” for terrorists.

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