News / Middle East

US Official says More Explosives from Yemen Cannot be Ruled Out

Investigators are seen with a United Parcel Service jet near the company's facility at Philadelphia International Airport, Friday, Oct. 29, 2010.
Investigators are seen with a United Parcel Service jet near the company's facility at Philadelphia International Airport, Friday, Oct. 29, 2010.
Michael Bowman

The White House says a plot to ship powerful, hidden explosive devices to the United States from Yemen is an ongoing threat, and that more such devices may exist beyond the two that were discovered in Britain and the United Arab Emirates.  

President Barack Obama's counter-terrorism advisor, John Brennan, says a massive effort is underway to locate any additional explosive materials that may exist in the international air cargo system.

"Only two have been found," Brennan said. "We cannot presume, though, that there are none other that are out there.  And so we are looking at all the packages that originated in Yemen.  We have been able to identify all of them, and we are now putting them through some very thorough screening.  We have suspended those cargo shipments to the Unite States that originate in Yemen."

Brennan was speaking on Fox News Sunday.

He described the bombs, hidden in ink cartridges for photocopiers, as sophisticated devices.  Although the packages were addressed to Jewish houses of worship in Chicago, Brennan said the explosives could have detonated before reaching their destination.

"It [the bombs] did not require any additional components [in order to be detonated]," Brennan said. "It did not require somebody to go in and manually press a syringe or something else.  This is something that could have been detonated en route to the United States."

Yemeni authorities have detained two women suspected of involvement in the plot.

Brennan says there is reason to suspect the involvement of a branch of al-Qaida that is active in Yemen, and that there are many questions that have yet to be answered.

"What we have to do is continue to investigate this, and see what else might be out there," Brennan said. "Are there other IEDs [improvised explosive devices] like this?  Is this part of a broader effort?  Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula has been quite vocal in their threats against us, and there are individuals there who are very dangerous."

Terrorism experts believe the United States and its allies have made it much more difficult for al-Qaida to pull off massive operations like the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York and Washington.  As a result, they say, terrorist groups are searching for ways to mount smaller-scale operations and exploit weaknesses that may exist in international security procedures.

You May Like

Video Miami Cubans Divided on New US Policy

While older, more conservative Cuban Americans have promoted anti-Castro political movement for years, younger generations say economically, it is time for change More

2014 Sees Dramatic Uptick in Boko Haram Abductions

Militants suspected in latest mass kidnapping of over 100 people in Gumsuri, Nigeria on Sunday More

Video Cuba Deal Is Major Victory for Pope

Role of Francis hailed throughout US, Latin America - though some Cuban-American Catholics have mixed feelings More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid