The video shows the 23-year-old Nigerian Muslim Christmas Day bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, training with al-Qaida in Yemen, firing weapons and speaking in Arabic about his impending attack.
He is shown reading from the Quran and saying, “God said those who punish you must be punished.” A U.S. intelligence official said Monday that the preliminary judgment is that it is Abdulmutallab in the video and the footage is consistent with the understanding that he was in training.
According to ABC News, the video was produced by al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP. Abdulmutallab and others are shows firing at targets, including a Jewish star and one labeled “UN.”
Abdulmutallab is accused of trying to use a bomb hidden in his underwear to bring down a Detroit-bound airliner on Christmas Day. The explosives failed, though they burned Abdulmutallab, who was arrested. He has been cooperating with investigators, discussing his contacts in Yemen and providing intelligence in multiple terrorism investigations, according to U.S. officials.
The IntelCenter, an Alexandria, Va.-based company that studies terrorist groups, reported that video from AQAP appears to show the first official communication from a terrorist organization by Anwar al-Awlaki, a Muslim cleric born in New Mexico to Yemeni parents. He has been linked to Abdulmutallab and Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the U.S. Army psychiatrist accused of killing 13 people in November at Fort Hood, Texas.
“While he had been supportive of groups in the past, he has until now never been publicly connected to a group through its official messages,” IntelCenter director Ben N. Venzke said in an e-mail. “Today’s release firmly ties al-Awlaki to AQAP.” ABC NEWS
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