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Friday
Jan142011

TSA Chief Explains Intel on Thermos Threat and Extra Screening

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- TSA Administrator John Pistole Thursday disclosed that intelligence information was obtained on December 23, 2010 that Al Qaeda on the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) was seeking to make a bomb using insulated drinking mugs and thermoses, leading to the extra check in security lines over the holiday.

Pistole also advised the public to expect additional screening if they travel with the thermal mugs and thermoses.

“In the near future if you want to take your thermos with you just be aware that your going to be subject to more physical screening," the TSA head said Thursday.

At an event sponsored by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security, Pistole provided details about a security bulletin issued by TSA on Christmas Eve that warned TSA officers to be alert about insulated drinking cups and thermoses and discussed how quickly the Department of Homeland Security acted on an intelligence tip.

“This plot was that they would use TATP [triacetone triperoxide] around the cylinder of a thermos; put it on either a passenger or a cargo plane and how ever the initiation or the detonator, they didn’t describe," he said. "So that’s general intelligence, what do we do about it? We put out an alert just making sure that all of our Transportation Security Officers, our TSOs, are alert to that and do additional physical screening in addition to the X-rays.”

Pistole also said intelligence indicated that the devices were being devised by AQAP’s master bomb-maker Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri a.k.a: Abu Saleh who was behind last fall’s cargo bomb plot.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 







ABC News Radio