A suicide bomber is suspected to have set off the explosive that blew a hole in a jetliner, sucked the man out of the plane and forced the aircraft to make an emergency landing on Tuesday in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, Somali officials said Saturday.
“Experts who were investigating the cause of the blast in the plane concluded that a bomb was the cause,” said Ali Jama Jangali, Somalia’s transport minister at a press conference in Mogadishu.
“The bomb aimed to kill all onboard the plane. Al-Shabaab (Somalia’s Islamic extremist rebel group) was behind it,” he said of the explosion on a Daallo Airlines Airbus 321. He said the findings are preliminary and the investigation is continuing.
The statement confirms information a U.S. aviation expert close to the investigation told CBS News on Friday, that an IED inside a laptop caused the midair explosion.
One passenger, Abdullahi Abdisalam Borle, died, according to Somali officials who did not give any details. A man’s body was found in the town of Balad, about 18 miles north of Mogadishu, according to police who said he might have been blown from the plane.