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Terror attack: Mutallab spent only 27 mins in Nigeria, says Govt

By Lawani Mikairu, with Agency report
ABUJA—Fresh facts emerged yesterday on the circumstances in which Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian suspected in the attempted attack on a U.S. airliner came into Nigeria before boarding a Delta airline to Detroit through Amsterdam.

According to the Information and Communications Minister, Professor Dora Akunyili, in a statement, last night, Mutallab spent less than 30 minutes in Nigeria.

“Further investigations by the Nigerian Government have revealed that he arrived Nigeria on December 24 from Ghana via Nigeria Eagle, former Virgin Nigeria, airline.

“His passport was scanned on entry into Nigeria at 12.08 p.m and was scanned at check-in for departure for Amsterdam at 12.35 p.m.”

The minister added that the government has ordered 3D body scanners for effective security at the nation’s airports.
“The scanners,” she said, “are the latest technology which is not readily available yet in most airports.”

Yemen Visa of Farouk expired

Meantime, it was learnt that Mutallab stayed in Yemen illegally after his visa expired three months ago and should have been stopped by authorities from leaving the country. Yemeni security officials said yesterday.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab spent time in Yemen on two occasions before the attempted Christmas Day attack on a Detroit-bound Northwest Airlines flight.

Yemeni officials said Abdulmutallab’s student visa for Yemen, where he studied Arabic at a local language institute, was valid from August  4 to September  21.

After his visa expired, the 23-year-old stayed on in Yemen until the first week in December, they said, but his whereabouts in the country was unknown. The officials said Abdulmutallab left Yemen on December 7 on a flight to Ethiopia and then continued on a few days later to Ghana. In Ghana, he was believed to have purchased the ticket for the flight from Lagos to Detroit that he is accused of trying to bring down.

They added that Yemen’s airport authorities and passport control should have prevented Abdulmutallab from departing.


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