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Nigerian arrested over US airliner bomb plot named as student at University of London
From The Times
A Nigerian reported to be studying in Britain allegedly tried to blow up a transatlantic airliner on Christmas Day in what the White House called an attempted act of terrorism.
The suspect, claiming links to al-Qaeda, was taken into custody with burns after allegedly trying to detonate explosives on Northwest Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit.
He was identified by ABC News as Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab, 23, an engineering student at University College London. A very, very good college - not one of the visa scam fakes, a world renowned institute.
He was reportedly on a US intelligence “watch-list” but not on the US Government’s no-fly list.
A federal “situational awareness” bulletin said: “The subject is claiming to have extremist affiliation and that the device was acquired in Yemen along with instructions as to when it should be used.”
The suspect began his journey in Nigeria on board KLM Flight 588 and made a connection in Amsterdam on to Northwest 253. According to ABC News his visa stated that he was travelling to the US for a religious ceremony. Initial reports were that he had lit firecrackers on board the Airbus 330, which was carrying 278 passengers.
However, a senior US counter-terrorism official said later that the man had actually been planning to blow up the aircraft but the explosive device had failed.
According to ABC News, the suspect told authorities that he had explosive powder taped to his leg and used a syringe of chemicals to detonate the powder.
The White House last night described the incident as terrorism-related. “We believe this was an attempted act of terrorism,” a White House official said.