Failed bomb aboard Delta flight

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Saturday, December 26, 2009

A file photo of a similar Delta aircraft.
Image: Gietje.

The Associated Press reports that a 23 year-old Nigerian passenger known as Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab attempted to ignite what seemed to be fireworks, which turned out to be a mixture of liquid and powdered explosives, during descent on Northwest/Delta Flight 253 departing from Amsterdam in the Netherlands to Detroit, Michigan.

The device intended to set off the bomb failed; the Airbus A330 plane safely landed around noon yesterday. At least one passenger was taken to the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor. The suspect claimed to investigators that he had connections to Al Qaeda. The Federal Aviation Administration and Transportation Security Administration are investigating how explosives got onto the plane. The man does not appear on a "no fly" list, but his name was known to have a significant terrorist connection. Officials are treating the case as a terrorist attack.

United States President Barack Obama convened a meeting on being notified of the incident. In a statement, a White House spokesman said "[President Obama] instructed that all appropriate measures be taken to increase security for air travel."

"Passengers may notice additional screening measures put into place to ensure the safety of the traveling public on domestic and international flights," Department of Homeland Security spokeswoman Sara Kuban said in a statement. "As always we encourage the traveling public to be observant and aware of their surroundings and report any suspicious behavior or activity to law enforcement officials."


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