Thwarted AQAP plots
Aug 09: AQAP bomb-maker Ibrahim al-Asiri sends his brother from Yemen to Saudi Arabia to assassinate a senior Saudi prince. The device explodes next to the prince but kills only the bomber.
Dec 09: AQAP sends Nigerian Omar Abdulmutallab on a flight to Detroit with a bomb hidden in his underpants. He lights the fuse, but is overpowered before it goes off.
Oct 10: AQAP sends two bombs hidden inside printer ink toner cartridges on cargo flights destined for Chicago. One is intercepted in Dubai, the other at East Midlands Airport after a tip-off.
May 12: AQAP gives a newly upgraded airline bomb to a supposed suicide bomber, but he is a Saudi double agent and he passes it to Saudi intelligence.
United States/Iraq – Islamist militants that have swept across Iraq pose a clear and “imminent” danger to the Middle East, Europe and the United States, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on the 9 Jul 14. The Pentagon chief described the rise of Sunni insurgents as a serious threat only days after suggesting Washington was not on the verge of any military action to help the Iraqi government in its fight with the extremists. “Make no mistake – and this country should not make any mistake on this, nor anyone in Congress – this is a threat to our country,” Hagel said of the militants. “This is a force that is sophisticated, it's dynamic, it's strong, it's organized, it's well-financed, it's competent,“ Hagel continued. “And it is a threat to our allies all over the Middle East. It's a threat to Europe,” he said at the base in King's Bay. The extremist group “may not appear to be an imminent threat to the United States,” but “it is a threat to the United States,” Hagel said. “It is a ... clear threat to our partners in that area, and it is imminent,” he said, without elaborating. U.S. officials and experts fear the extremists will carve out sanctuaries that could serve as training camps and launching pads for terror attacks on the West.
United States/United Kingdom – Security was being stepped up at British airports amid fears that terrorists are working on a bomb that could sidestep current measures it was reported on the 3 Jul 14. The move comes after the United States called for heightened precautions amid reports two terror networks are working together on a bomb that could evade existing security measures. The Government highlighted the importance of vigilance but said the extra measures - which have not been disclosed - are not expected to cause "significant disruption" to passengers, and the Department for Transport (DfT) said the official UK threat status remains unchanged. Changes to security measures were announced after Washington Homeland Security Secretary Johnson ordered beefed up security at foreign airports from where aircraft fly directly to the US, reportedly as a result of intelligence that groups in Yemen and Syria had joined forces to plot an attack. Later American officials have ordered some overseas airports with direct flights to the US to intensify screening of electronic devices. Transport officials said in a statement, passengers could be asked to switch on devices, and equipment that does not power up would not be allowed on board. Analysts say the changes appear to be in response to intelligence that Islamic militants in Syria and Yemen are developing bombs that could evade airport security. "During the security examination, officers may also ask that owners power up some devices, including cell phones," it said. "Powerless devices will not be permitted on board the aircraft. The traveller may also undergo additional screening."