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FBI warns of terrorist use of planes

From Kelli Arena
CNN Washington Bureau

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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The FBI is repeating an advisory that aircraft could be used again as terrorist weapons and warns of new methods hijackers could use to sneak explosives aboard jetliners.

The FBI advisory, sent to 18,000 state and local law enforcement agencies around the United States, is based on interviews conducted with detainees after September 11, 2001 officials said.

Those detainees told FBI agents that prior to last year's terrorist attacks there were discussions among al Qaeda members about using 10 to 20 Chechen Muslims already in the United States to overwhelm airline crews after taking seats in first class.

Detainees said other discussions focused on sneaking liquid explosives mixed with coffee carried aboard planes.

This advisory was not prompted by any new information, FBI officials said. Rather, it's being repeated as a reminder that the terror threat still exists because al Qaeda plots often take a long time to hatch.

Also, the advisory information comes on a day when a congressional investigation revealed there was far more evidence of terrorists planning to use planes as weapons than previously made public. Other advisories have also been repeated.

FBI advisories go out to state and local agencies every Wednesday and are usually not made public.

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