The US parcel bomb plot as it unfolded

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Security measures were boosted around the world on Sunday after the discovery of bombs hidden in two packages on US-bound cargo planes during stopovers in Britain and Dubai.

Here is a chronology of developments in the foiled bomb plot:


-- British officials, acting on a Saudi intelligence tip-off to the United States, find a suspected bomb disguised as a toner cartridge on a US-bound cargo plane at East Midlands airport in central England.

-- The White House says US President Barack Obama was told of a "potential terrorist threat" surrounding suspicious packages on two cargo planes in transit to the United States, including one in Dubai as well as England.

-- US package delivery firm FedEx and its counterpart UPS suspend deliveries from Yemen.

-- Obama says the two suspicious packages contained explosive material, were addressed to synagogues in Chicago, and that they were a "credible terrorist threat."

-- A senior Yemeni official says his government is ready to launch an investigation into the suspicious packages.


-- Police in Dubai say the parcel intercepted in the Gulf state "bears the hallmarks of those used by terrorist organisations like Al-Qaeda," a suspicion later repeated by US Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

-- Yemeni authorities say they seized and are examining 26 suspicious parcels.

-- France suspends air freight from Yemen.

-- Obama thanks British Prime Minister David Cameron and Saudi King Abdullah for helping to disrupt the terror plot, and reiterates a call to Yemen for closer counterterrorism cooperation.

-- Yemen security forces arrest a woman suspected of sending two allegedly Al-Qaeda linked parcel bombs after surrounding her house in Sanaa.

-- Britain's Cameron says the parcel bomb found on a US-bound cargo jet that stopped over in Britain was designed to blow up the plane.

-- Germany blocks air freight from Yemen.

© 2010 AFP

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