US fears militants will turn to bombs implanted in body cavities

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab received multiple life sentences for attempting to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner with explosives sewn into his underwear on Dec. 25, 2009.


By Published: May 2, 2012

U.S. and allied officials are increasingly concerned that doctors working with al-Qaida's Yemen-based affiliate will implant bombs inside living militants in order to try to circumvent airport security measures and bring down aircraft, Reuters reported.

A CIA drone attack earlier this year killed a Yemeni doctor who had devised medical procedures to surgically plant explosive devices in humans, Reuters said, but the expert bomb-maker who invented the tactic is still at large.

Two attacks in 2009 -- including a failed plot to blow up a Detroit-bound plane on Christmas Day -- involved explosives sewn into the bomber's underwear. Authorities subsequently became concerned that militants would begin concealing explosives inside their body cavities, which would be harder to detect by airport X-ray machines.

Many Western airports installed unpopular body scanners in response to the threat.

Source: Reuters