- West Africa
- United States
- Religion - Terrorism
Nigerian al-Qaeda terror suspect was a troubled youth
Nigerian terror suspect, twenty-three year old Abdulfarouk Umar Abdulmutallab, was a young Islamc scholar whose extreme beliefs alienated him from his family and drew him closer to the mission of al-Qeada, his family has revealed. His father, an elite Nigerian banker and politician had reported him to the the Nigerian security authorities and to the American embassy in Abuja.
Local reports say that Abdulmutallab, while at secondary school- the British International School in Lome, Togo, was known for preaching about Islam to his school mates and earned the nickname "Alfa", a local lingo for an Islamic scholar and leader.
After his secondary school, Abdulmutallab, went to University College London to study mechanical engineering at the University College, London between September 2005 and 2008. He migrated to Egypt after graduation, and then later to Dubai.
His father, Mutallab Snr., who is married to a Yemenese, told Timesonline that he had lost contact with the son after he left London in November last year. According to reports he declared to his family members that he did not want to have anything to do with any of them again, while he was in Dubai in the United Arab emirates.
Mutallab Snr., told US and Nigerian officials about his concerns of the extreme views of his son. US sources have since confirmed that a file was opened, but the information did not warrant placing the accused on a "no-fly" list, it has been revealed.
Also, reporters have gathered from a man who claims to be Abdulmutallab’s brothers some details of the seemingly troubled Islamic youth.
"We know Farouk’s extreme views and were always apprehensive of where it may lead him to. In fact, during the last Boko Haram crisis, we were afraid he may be involved, but he [wasn’t]. He has maintained his distance from us and we never bothered him much. He wanted to be left alone so we respected his wishes. We were always worried about him because he is young. But I was shocked to hear he wanted to blow up a passenger airliner. I hope it is not true," the alleged family member was quoted as saying.
Abdulmutallab who has been described by the American security authorities and co-passangers of the Northwest Airlines Flight 253 as allegedly acting on behalf of al-Qaeda is under detention in America for attempting to blow up a an airline in Detriot on Friday.
Nigerian Minister of information and communications, Prof. Dora Akunyili, has said that as a nation, Nigeria abhors all forms of terrorism.
"The Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has directed Nigerian security agencies to commence full investigation of the incident. While steps are being taken to verify the identity of the alleged suspect and his motives, our security agencies will cooperate fully with the American authorities in the on-going investigations. Nigerian government will be providing updates as more information becomes available," Akunyili is quoted.
Reports from the Nigerian Embassy in Washington D.C has revealed that the FBI has granted access to Nigerian diplomatic officials to meet with the bombing Abdulmutallab.
"I have been receiving telephone calls from all over the world about my child who has been arrested for an alleged attempt to bomb a plane. I am really disturbed. I would not want to say anything at the moment until I put myself together. I will address a press conference on the issue on Monday. I have been summoned by the Nigerian security and I am on my way to Abuja to answer the call," Abdulmutallab’s father was quoted.