Attempt to Bomb Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on Christmas Day, 2009
The Islamist terror network al-Qaida apparantly made an attempt to attack the United States on Christmas Day, 2009. A Nigerian man named Abdul Mudallab attempted to ignite an explosive device onboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 as it neared the airport in Detroit, Michigan on December 25, 2009. Early reports indicate Mudallab claimed a connection to al-Qaida, though later reports say he denied any such connection.
Reports indicate that Mudallab, an an engineering student at University College of London, took a flight from Nigeria to the Netherlands, where he then boarded the American plane on a route to Detroit. About 20 minutes from the Detroit airport, fellow passengers smelled smoke, and noticed that Mudallab was attempting to ignite something. A passenger jumped on Mudallab, and apparently interrupted an attempt to cause a mid-air explosion. The suspect was seen with burns to his legs, and the passenger who jumped on him also is reported to have suffered burns.
Airport and airlines security worldwide was tightened in response to this attack. U.S. officials are treating this incident as an attempted terrorist attack.
Links and Resources:
Jet passengers overpowered would-be bomber–LA Times, Dec. 25, 2009
Statement by Department of Homeland Security Press Secretary Sara Kuban–Dept. of Homeland Security Press Release, Dec. 25, 2009