Terrorist Attacks Targeting Police, 1998–2010: Exploring Heavily Hit Countries

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3 Scopus citations


With over 14% of all terrorist attacks since 1970 targeting law enforcement, terrorist attacks on police is a problem in need of scholarly attention. Police serve as symbolic targets of the government and strategic targets of terrorist attacks, yet we know little about such attacks. This article explores terrorist attacks targeting police in heavily hit countries, drawing from the Global Terrorism Database. While Iraq and India have the most terrorist attacks targeting police, these countries also have a high number of terrorist attacks against all targets. To account for the total number of terrorist attacks, proportions are explored, finding Macedonia, Russia, and Georgia have the highest proportions of terrorist attacks targeting police between 1998 and 2010. A common thread among these heavily hit countries is a rapidly changing governing regime coupled with societal schism—in other words, these countries seem to share low governmental legitimacy. Implications for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-278
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Criminal Justice Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Law


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