News

U.S. issues warning about shoe bombs

U.S. issues warning about shoe bombs

SHOE BOMBS: The sources said the warning principally applied to flights originating overseas and heading for the United States, rather than domestic flights or planes headed overseas from the United States.

By Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. authorities issued a warning on Wednesday to airlines flying to the United States to watch out for militants who may have hidden bombs in their shoes, U.S. government sources said.

The warning came from the Department of Homeland Security, the sources said, and it is consistent with concerns security agencies have about militants trying to smuggle explosives onto airplanes in shoes, cosmetics or liquids.

The sources said the warning principally applied to flights originating overseas and heading for the United States, rather than domestic flights or planes headed overseas from the United States.

However, some sources said the warnings did not mean that the United States had specific intelligence indicating a plot to use a shoe bomb overseas was in progress. One source said the alert was being issued “out of an abundance of caution.” A second source said the alert was “not a big deal.”

Wednesday’s warning follows one earlier this month in which U.S. authorities warned airlines flying to Russia for the Sochi Winter Olympics to watch out for toothpaste tubes that could hold bomb-making ingredients and could be smuggled through airport security.

Since the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, Islamist militants have made two known attempts to blow up U.S.-bound airliners using bombs hidden in their clothes or footwear.

In December 2001, Richard Reid of Britain tried to set off explosives concealed in his shoe on a Paris-to-Miami American Airlines flight. Passengers subdued him before he could light the fuse.

On Christmas Day 2009, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab of Nigeria tried to detonate an explosive hidden in his underwear as his Delta Air Lines flight descended into Detroit after taking off from Amsterdam. Abdulmutallab’s device malfunctioned, burning him, and he was subdued by passengers.

Both Reid and Abdulmutallab are serving long sentences in U.S. prisons.

(Editing by Bill Trott and Mohammad Zargham)

Recent Headlines

in Viral Videos

Councilman forgets to turn off his mic in the bathroom

Fresh
25-overlay1

The city's Mayor Pro Tem tries to keep it professional, but her fellow council member's trip to the bathroom is just too distracting.

in Entertainment, Lifestyle, World

Britain’s newborn princess has been named

Fresh
Britain's Prince William, right, and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, pose for the media with their newborn daughter outside St. Mary's Hospital's exclusive Lindo Wing, London, Saturday, May 2, 2015. The Duchess gave birth to the Princess on Saturday morning.

Britain's newborn princess has been named Charlotte Elizabeth Diana.

in Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: Tiny Bruce Lee fan shows off incredible nunchaku skills

Fresh
19-overlay

A five-year-old boy expertly performs the classic nunchaku scene from Bruce Lee's "Game Of Death."

in Entertainment

‘Avengers’ sequel secures second best opening weekend ever

Fresh
This photo provided by Disney/Marvel shows, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff, in the film, "Avengers: Age Of Ultron." The movie releases in the U.S. on May 1, 2015.

"Avengers: Age of Ultron" has pulled in a staggering $187.7 million since opening on Thursday night.

in Entertainment

Star Trek actress Grace Lee Whitney dies at 85

Fresh
Grace Lee Whitney makes an appearance at the London Film & Comic Convention in 2006.

Grace Lee Whitney, know for her role as Star Trek's Janice Rand, has passed away.