CIA foils Al Qaeda plot to blast US-bound aircraft using underwear bomb

Last Updated: Tue, May 08, 2012 06:50 hrs

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has confirmed that it foiled an Al Qaeda terror plot in the Arabian Peninsula to blast a U.S.-bound aircraft using an underwear bomb just around the first death anniversary of Osama bin Laden.

The Al Qaeda plot involved an upgraded version of the underwear bomb that had failed to blast aboard a jetliner over Detroit on Christmas 2009.

According to Fox News, a U.S. official said that the new bomb was to be placed in a passenger's underwear. The Al Qaeda this time had reportedly made a more sophisticated system of detonation.

"Initial exploitation indicates that the device is very similar to IEDs that have been used previously by Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in attempted terrorist attacks, including against aircraft and for targeted assassinations," the FBI said.

"The FBI currently has possession of the IED and is conducting technical and forensics analysis on it," FBI added.

Officials said they were examining if the bomb had the power to blow down an airplane.

They added that the device did not contain any metal, therefore could not be detected at the airport metal detector. U.S. official said that Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, was "committed to striking targets in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, the Homeland, and Europe.

The officials said that the AQAP also wanted to carry out a terror attack to avenge the death of Osama bin Laden.

In a press conference at the Pentagon with China's Minister of National Defense, General Liang Guanglie, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said the U.S. has to "continue to remain vigilant against those who would seek to attack this country and we will do everything necessary to keep America safe." (ANI)

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