The sole suspect held in the plot to send explosive-laden packages to the U.S. from Yemen has been released, according to the suspect’s father.
Yemeni officials said Saturday that security forces had detained two people connected to the probe, raising initial hopes of a big, early break in the case.
Family members identified one of the detainees as Hanan Al-Samawi, a fifth-year engineering student at Sana’a University. Officials said they had also taken in the young woman’s mother but that she wasn’t a suspect herself. Acquaintances and family members defended the young woman, saying she and her family weren’t political or known to be affiliated with militants.
Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh said Saturday that Washington passed on a telephone number that led security forces to the female student. According to a person familiar with the probe, Yemeni authorities traced one of the parcels to the student because the package’s paperwork contained the suspect’s phone number and address.
But the woman’s attorney, a human-rights lawyer in Sana’a, said there was no real evidence, suggesting a case of identity fraud.
“They claim that they found her phone number (off) the package, but that is not concrete evidence,” said Abdul Raman Barman, the lawyer, in an interview. “Anyone could have written her number (on) the package. “
It seems the author of the bomb is a Saudi national:
A Saudi bombmaker believed to be working with al Qaeda’s Yemen-based wing is a key suspect in the parcel bomb plot against the United States, a US official said on Saturday.
Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri, who tops a Saudi Arabian terrorism list, is the brother of a suicide bomber killed in an attempt to kill Saudi counter-terrorism chief Prince Mohammed bin Nayef last year.
Chicago Jews learn of bomb plot against their synagogue.
Terrorism leads to loss of 1 bln dollars on tourism. Terrorism and khat are killing Yemen.