The US has thwarted a plot by al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen to bomb an airliner around the one-year anniversary of the killing of Osama bin Laden, the country’s National Security Council has confirmed to Al Jazeera.
US media reports on Monday said the plot involved an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate aboard a jetliner over Detroit, Michigan, on December 25, 2009. President Barack Obama "was assured that the device did not pose a threat to the public," National Security Council deputy spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said.
Obama, who had been informed of the plot in April, had however directed agencies "to take whatever steps necessary to guard against this type of attack" and had been regularly briefed by his national security team. Separately, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said there was no active plot against the US at this time.
"We have no specific, credible information regarding an active terrorist plot against the US at this time," DHS spokesman Matt Chandler said.