Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Defiant Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab calls U.S. a cancer


Defiant Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, yesterday told a U.S. Federal Court sitting in Detroit, that not only is the radical Islamic cleric, Anwar al Awlaki, killed by the U.S. elite forces last week still alive, but that the U.S. itself is a cancer, that will be wiped out.

Abdulmutallab, son of a prominent Nigerian banker, is standing trial for allegedly trying to bomb an international jetliner on Christmas Day in 2009.

He is said to have concealed the bomb in his underwear. Abdulmutallab's outburst came as jury selection got under way for his federal terror trial in Detroit, where the 24 year old is acting as his own attorney and has previously told reporters they should stop reporting that Osama bin Laden was dead.

'Anwar is alive,'Abdulmutallab said yesterday, referring to American born cleric Anwar al Awlaki, who was killed last week by a joint CIA-U.S. military air strike in Yemen.

'The mujahadeen will wipe out the U.S.' he added. Abdulmutallab, a well educated Nigerian from an upper class family, is allegedly a tutelage of al Awlaki and wanted to become a martyr when he boarded Northwest Airlines Flight 253 Amsterdam on Christmas 2009, according to the government.

Abdulmutallab, who complained loudly at a previous hearing about having to wear prison clothes, came into the courtroom yesterday wearing an over sized prison T shirt.

U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds called a brief recess to allow him to change into clothes more appropriate for court, after acknowledging and denying his apparent request to wear a 'Yemeni belt with a dagger.' Abdulmutallab later wore a long robe with a dark pinstriped coat over it, as well as a black skull cap.

The judge has denied several of Abdulmutallab's requests for the trial, including that the case be judged under Islamic law. Abdulmutallab has pleaded not guilty to eight charges, including conspiracy to commit terrorism and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.

The government says he wanted to blow up the plane by detonating chemicals in his underwear, just seven minutes before the jet carrying 279 passengers and a crew of 11 was to land at Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

But the bomb didn't work, and passengers, assisted by crew members, saw flames and pounced on Abdulmutallab. The failed suicide attack, the first act of terrorism in the U.S. during the Obama administration, revealed the rise of a dangerous al-Qaeda affiliate and al Awlaki's growing influence.

The government says Abdulmutallab willingly explained the plot twice, first to U.S. border officers who took him off the plane and then in more detail to FBI agents who interviewed him at a hospital for 50 minutes, following treatment for serious burns to his groin.

Abdulmutallab told authorities he trained in Yemen, home base for Al- Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. He said he was influenced by al Awlaki, who was killed on Friday by an air strike that President Barack Obama called a 'major blow' to Al-Qaeda's most dangerous franchise.

After the outburst about al Awlaki and flap over Abdulmutallab's clothes, jury selection got under way in earnest, with most questioning done by the judge and attorney Anthony Chambers, who has been appointed to assist Abdulmutallab.

The Moment

Related stories: Trial of Nigerian who attempted to blow up American airliner begins today

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Family of Nigerian bomb suspect issues statement


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