US shuls and Jewish facilities were ordered to be extra cautious and thoroughly check any items received by mail following the discovery of explosives in Britian and Dubai which were bound for Jewish facilitiesin Chicago.
The warning was given before Obama confirmed the packages contained explosives. Earlier, US media reported that the explosives were bound for a shul and a Jewish community center in Chicago, information confirmed by Obama Friday.
Michael Kotzin, vice president of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, said that synagogues and other locations associated with Judaism were asked to check their mail with additional care even before the bomb threat surfaced.
Kotzin said the first warning came regarding packages originating in Yemen, and later came warnings regarding Saudi Arabia and additional countries.
Ortal Alon Finklestein, who resides in Chicago, said that life goes on as usual in the city. “My mother-in-law called me earlier and told me of the news. It was a bit frightening, there’s a synagogue near our house and we go there sometimes, mainly on Shabbos and holidays. There’s also a Jewish school nearby, but overall I feel safe. I don’t feel an immediate threat.”