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Office of the Press Secretary


For Immediate Release April 15, 2013


James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

6:11 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, everybody. Earlier today, I was briefed by my homeland security team on the events in Boston. We're continuing to monitor and respond to the situation as it unfolds. And I've directed the full resources of the federal government to help state and local authorities protect our people, increase security around the United States as necessary, and investigate what happened.

The American people will say a prayer for Boston tonight. And Michelle and I send our deepest thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims in the wake of this senseless loss.

We don't yet have all the answers. But we do know that multiple people have been wounded, some gravely, in explosions at the Boston Marathon.

I've spoken to FBI Director Mueller and Secretary of Homeland Security Napolitano, and they're mobilizing the appropriate resources to investigate and to respond.

I've updated leaders of Congress in both parties, and we reaffirmed that on days like this there are no Republicans or Democrats -- we are Americans, united in concern for our fellow citizens.

I've also spoken with Governor Patrick and Mayor Menino, and made it clear that they have every single federal resource necessary to care for the victims and counsel the families. And above all, I made clear to them that all Americans stand with the people of Boston.

Boston police, firefighters, and first responders as well as the National Guard responded heroically, and continue to do so as we speak. It's a reminder that so many Americans serve and sacrifice on our behalf every single day, without regard to their own safety, in dangerous and difficult circumstances. And we salute all those who assisted in responding so quickly and professionally to this tragedy.

We still do not know who did this or why. And people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. But make no mistake -- we will get to the bottom of this. And we will find out who did this; we'll find out why they did this. Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups will feel the full weight of justice.

Today is a holiday in Massachusetts -- Patriots' Day. It's a day that celebrates the free and fiercely independent spirit that this great American city of Boston has reflected from the earliest days of our nation. And it's a day that draws the world to Boston's streets in a spirit of friendly competition. Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people. I'm supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other, and move forward as one proud city. And as they do, the American people will be with them every single step of the way.

You should anticipate that as we get more information, our teams will provide you briefings. We're still in the investigation stage at this point. But I just want to reiterate we will find out who did this and we will hold them accountable.

Thank you very much.

END 6:14 P.M. EDT


Federal source: Most bomb-makers stick to one design

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Federal law enforcement sources say as authorities investigate, they take into account the possibility that it's a terrorist attack -- that includes possibly domestic -- until the Joint Terrorism Task Force can rule that out.
Earlier today, investigators worked to simultaneously look for other devices designed to hurt first responders or others.

They also were working to collect videos from every possible location -- that's an effort that will likely go on for several days. They also are working to identify witnesses.

Some law enforcement believe the key behind finding those responsible is collecting pieces of the detonated devices and matching those up with those law enforcement recovered before they went off. The bomb remnants could have ended up in a variety of places, like rooftops, so the combing could take some time.

"They will look for the pieces," said one law enforcement source who asked not to be named. "Then when they reconstruct the device they will try to match it up to other, known, signatures of bomb makers to see if there is a link to anyone under investigation or other bombs that have been examined. Most bomb makers stick with a single design and use it repeatedly."

In a brief statement, President Obama vowed to find the person or people responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing and urged Americans not to "jump to conclusions before we have all the facts."

"We still do not know who did this or why," Obama said in a White House press briefing.

Obama said "every federal resource necessary" will be used to find those behind the attack and to help those who were injured. Three were killed and more than 90 injured after two explosions at the Boston Marathon finish line.

"Make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this and we will find out who did this and we will find out why they did this," the president said. "Any responsible groups will feel the full weight of justice."

From the White House:

The President will deliver a statement in the Brady Press Briefing Room. The President's remarks will be open press.

6:10PM (ET) THE PRESIDENT delivers a statement

Brady Press Briefing Room

Open Press

Rahm Emanuel personally called the Mayor of Boston to offer support after the deadly explosions in Boston.

"I called Mayor Thomas Menino this afternoon to convey support from the people of Chicago. During this time of tragedy and uncertainty, the people of Boston are in our thoughts and prayers."

"The running of the Boston Marathon and Patriots Day are time-honored traditions. While the details of today's tragedy are still unclear, one thing was immediately known: the patriotism and professionalism of public servants and first responders. Our hearts go out the first responders, runners, volunteers and spectators in Boston today."