The first underwear bomb plot was thwarted aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on Christmas 2009. The airplane is shown here after its arrival at Detroit Metro Airport later that day.
The CIA foiled an elaborate new underwear bomb plot by an al-Qaida affiliate in Yemen that was intended to bring down a U.S.-bound airliner, The Associated Press reported Monday. The strike was reportedly planned to take place around the one-year anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death.
AP via The Huffington Post:
The plot involved an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate aboard a jetliner over Detroit on Christmas 2009. This new bomb was also designed to be used in a passenger’s underwear, but this time al-Qaida developed a more refined detonation system, U.S. officials said.
The FBI is examining the latest bomb to see whether it could have passed through airport security and brought down an airplane, officials said. They said the device did not contain metal, meaning it probably could have passed through an airport metal detector. But it was not clear whether new body scanners used in many airports would have detected it.
The would-be suicide bomber, based in Yemen, had not yet picked a target or bought his plane tickets when the CIA stepped in and seized the bomb, officials said. It’s not immediately clear what happened to the alleged bomber.
News that the bomb plot was thwarted closely follows the announcement that a senior al-Qaida leader, Fahd al-Quso, was killed by a U.S. drone strike in Yemen on Sunday. —TEB
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