US President Donald Trump has warned political violence has “no place in the United States, after suspected explosive devices were sent to a number of public figures including former president Barack Obama.
A series of suspicious packages were intercepted by police targeting Mr Obama, Hillary Clinton and CNN reporter Eric Holder and the office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, vilified by right-wing critics and criticised by Mr Trump and his administration.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) said the packages resembling pipe bombs sent Mrs Clinton and Mr Obama were intercepted during mail screening, while a live explosive device resembling a pipe bomb and white powder was sent to CNN’s bureau in New York.
The package sent to CNN was addressed to former CIA director John Brennan, a periodic guest commentator on the cable network.
Mr Brennan is actually a contracted analyst at NBC News.
According to police, the package forced the evacuation of the Time Warner Centre was found in the CNN mail room.
CNN has been known for its coverage of the Trump administration and has been singled out for harsh words by the president.
Signs at Trump rallies have regularly condemned the network.
CNN chief Jeff Zucker criticised Mr Trump, claiming the president had a “total and complete lack of understanding” about the seriousness of their attacks on the media.
Other targets included prominent African American democrats including Eric Holder who was US Attorney General under Mr Obama and Californian law maker Maxine Waters, both outspoken Trump critics.
All the packages reportedly included the return address of Debbie Wasserman Schultz, former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.
New York officials have described the act as terrorism.
Earlier at an event for opioid abuse, Mr Trump said threats of physical violence did not belong in the US.
He promised a full investigation into the incidents.
“The full weight of our government is being deployed to conduct this investigation and bring those responsible for these despicable acts to justice,” Mr Trump said.
“We will spare no resources or expense in this effort.”
Mr Trump added the country needed to come together in solidarity.
“In these times, we have to unify, we have to come together, and sent one very clear, strong, unmistakable message that acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America.”
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio told a news conference it was a terrorist act.
“This clearly is an act of terror attempting to undermine our free press and leaders of this country through acts of violence,” Mr de Blasio said.
The package sent to Mrs Clinton late on Tuesday local time was the first to be identified by police, while another package addressed to Mr Obama was found early on Wednesday.
Mrs Clinton said the attacks reflected the divisions in the country.
“We are fine, thanks to the men and women of the Secret Service who intercepted the package addressed to us, long before it made its way to our home,” she said.
But it is a troubling time isn’t it, and it’s a time of deep divisions, and we have to do everything we can to bring our country together.”