The lone man who carried a laptop-bomb onto the Somali plane, causing a hole in the fuselage, has been identified as an Islamic school teacher. This raises the concern that the militants are now using seemingly reasonable people in the society to hit their target.
According to the associated Press news agency, Abdullahi Abdisalam Borleh who was blown out of the plane after the bomb he carried onto the plane exploded shortly after take off has been identified as a school teacher in Somalia.
Mr. Borleh detonated his bomb soon after Daallo Airlines-owned Airbus A321, took off from Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, which caused a hole in the fuselage of the commercial flight from Somalia to Djibouti on 2 February.
Intelligence officials suggest Mr Borleh from Somalia’s breakaway state of Somaliland, had boarded the plane with the intention of blasting it with the explosive but this has not been conclusively established, AP adds.
However, a Somali Muslim cleric says he finds it hard to believe that the Islamic school teacher Abdullahi Abdisalam Borleh was behind the explosion.
The cleric, who knew the suspected bomber, in the self-declared republic of Somaliland, tells AP.
Mr Borleh was “chatty”, and sometimes walked with a cane because he had a problem with his leg, said Sheikh Mohamed Abdullahi,
He travelled to Mogadishu [Somalia’s capital] to obtain a passport to go to either Turkey or India for medical reasons.
He was probably travelling overseas to straighten his leg.
The apparently failed blast didn’t kill anybody onboard the plane.
The explosion took place about 15 minutes into the flight, when the plane was only at around 11,000ft (3,350m) and the cabin was not yet pressurized – which would have been disastrous if the cabin was already pressurized.
The plane made an emergency landing in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu.
The Islamists have been fighting to prove to the entire world that the assertions they are close to being defeated, since it was routed from Mogadishu in mid-2011, are wrong.
A few days ago, the group claimed responsibility for the bomb attack planted in a laptop which ripped a hole in a passenger plane shortly after takeoff from the capital Mogadishu earlier this month
The militants had also claimed responsibility of murdering former defence minister of Somalia who was blown up by a bomb planted in his car. He was blasted by an explosive attached under his car seat which exploded in the capital Mogadishu.