Man blasted out of the side of the aircraft (Image Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
An explosion on a Djibouti-bound Airbus 321 where a passenger fell through a hole in the side of the plane following a blast may have been caused by an explosive device in a laptop. The plane took off from Mogadishu, Somalia but the pilot on the Daallo Airlines flight was forced to return to land at the capital’s airport. BBC quoted the Captain, Mr Vodopivec who said, “it was my first bomb; I hope it will be the last.”
Ali Jama Jangali, Somalia’s transport minister spoke at a press conference in Mogadishu saying, “experts who were investigating the cause of the blast in the plane concluded that a bomb was the cause.” The body of a man named Abdisalam Borleh was later located at the town of Balad, around 20 miles from Mogadishu. The Mirror, reported,
“The bomber, engulfed in flames, was said to have been dragged through the gap by the air pressure.
Eyewitnesses on the ground reported seeing a charred body fall to plunge from the sky.
Two US government sources said on Wednesday that initial forensic testing had detected possible traces of the explosive TNT on the aircraft.”
The incident could have been far worse had the plane been at a higher altitude. All other passengers escaped serious injury, 2 persons required hospital treatment. Officials believe the suspected suicide bomber intended to kill all on the aircraft.
Adam A Omar who tweets on security, politics and cricket posted a video stating, “suspects exchanging explosive ridden laptop that impacted, Daallo Airlines… he continued, adding, “according to CCTV footage an airport worker hands the explosive ridden laptop to suspected bomber.” He said, “manner of attack is almost exact replica of hotel Makka al Mukarama attack in which laptop is handed to bomber within premise.
Video from SNTV which claims to show handover of a briefcase.
There have been no claims of responsibility to date. Al Shabaab, a militant group affiliated with Al Qaeda is known to operate in the region. The group has recently taken control iof the port of Merka, 60 miles from Mogadishu, see following link,
“Al Shabaab militants retake Somali port”
Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights/WOT and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad. She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.