The number of terrorist acts internationally has dropped 45 percent from the level in 2001, according to an annual report by the State Department.

There were 346 attacks in 2001, compared to 198 in 2002 and 190 in 2003, said the report, “Patterns of Global Terrorism,” released by the office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism.

The figure in 2003 represents the lowest annual total of international terrorist attacks since 1969, the State Department office said.

A total of 307 persons were killed in the attacks of 2003, far fewer than the 725 killed during 2002, according to the report. A total of 1,593 persons were wounded in the attacks that occurred in 2003, down from 2,013 persons wounded the year before.

In the 2003 attacks, a total of 307 were killed, compared to the 725 killed in 2002.

Last year, 1,593 people were wounded in the attacks, down from 2,013 in 2002.

Asia suffered the highest casualty count last year, 159 dead and 951 wounded in 70 attacks.

There were 82 anti-US attacks in 2003, up slightly from the 77 attacks the previous year, a 62-percent decrease from the 219 attacks in 2001.

In 2003, 35 American citizens died in 15 international terrorist attacks.

The deadliest anti-U.S. attack occurred in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, May 12, when suicide bombers in booby-trapped cars filled with explosives drove into housing compounds, killing nine Americans.

Most of the attacks that have occurred during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom do not meet the longstanding U.S. definition of international terrorism because they were directed at combatants, the State Department said.

Terrorist attacks are defined as attacks against civilians and military personnel who at the time of the incident were unarmed and/or not on duty.

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