UPDATE: U.S. nerves frayed amid Boston bombing, ricin letters sent to White House

The Associated Press and The Canadian Press
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WASHINGTON (CP) — Despite reports investigators were closing in on a Boston bombing suspect, America’s frayed nerves found little in the way of relief Wednesday as news emerged of a poison-laced letter addressed to U.S. President Barack Obama.

The FBI said there was nothing to suggest any link between the letter, which tested positive for the deadly poison ricin, and the bombings that killed three people and injured nearly 180 others Monday at the Boston Marathon.

But in an indication of the public appetite in the U.S. for a break in the bombing investigation, which involves hundreds of law enforcement officials and various federal, state and local agencies, information was being leaked to various media outlets at a furious pace.

At one point mid-afternoon, The Associated Press cited anonymous law enforcement officals as saying investigators had a suspect in their sights and an arrest was imminent. Other officials immediately shot down that report.

A handful of news outlets said investigators had identified a suspect from a surveillance video provided to them by a Lord and Taylor store located between the sites of the two explosions that rocked Boston two days ago.

CBS News, meantime, reported that the bomber was on the phone when he dropped off a second backpack containing a bomb near the finish line. Citing law enforcement officials, the network reported cellphone records resulted in the suspect’s identification.

It was all sickly familiar to the tense, nerve-wracking atmosphere in the United States in the days following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, when traumatized Americans grappled with the aftermath of the worst such attack on U.S. soil.

At the same time, political offices in Washington found themselves on the receiving end of deliveries that contained anthrax spores. The perpetrator was later discovered to be unrelated to the 9-11 culprits.

The bombings, about 10 seconds and 90 metres apart, showered bystanders with nails, ball bearings and other shards of metal that had been packed into at least one kitchen pressure cooker and detonated at the finish line.

The blasts tore the limbs off some victims and left a downtown Boston street soaked with blood.

The explosions propelled shrapnel so far that police were collecting fragments from rooftops along the marathon’s route on Wednesday. The lid of a pressure cooker was reportedly among the rooftop debris recovered on Tuesday.

In a jittery U.S. capital, meantime, authorities revealed that Obama is the second politician to be sent ricin in a letter postmarked Memphis. A Republican senator from Mississippi was also sent a letter, which was intercepted at an off-site Capitol Hill mail facility.

The newest letters touched off a scare in the U.S. capital. They read, in part, “to see a wrong and not expose it, is to become a silent partner to its continuance.” The letters were signed “KC, and I approve this message.”

Reports of suspicious packages and envelopes were also made in two Senate office buildings late Wednesday morning.

Police cleared out the first floor of one Senate building for more than an hour and questioned a man carrying a backpack with sealed envelopes. He didn’t end up being taken into custody.

 

 

•••

Boston (AP) — Police and reporters converged on the federal courthouse in Boston on Wednesday amid conflicting reports of whether a suspect was in custody in the marathon bombings that killed three people and wounded more than 170.

Several media outlets reported earlier in the day that a suspect had been identified from surveillance video taken at a Lord & Taylor store between the sites of the two bomb blasts.

A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation told The Associated Press that a suspect was in custody. The official, who was not authorized to divulge details of the investigation, said the suspect was expected in federal court.

But FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office in Boston said no arrests had been made.

“Contrary to widespread reporting, there have been no arrests made in connection with the Boston Marathon attack,” the FBI said in a statement. “Over the past day and a half, there have been a number of press reports based on information from unofficial sources that has been inaccurate. Since these stories often have unintended consequences, we ask the media, particularly at this early stage of the investigation, to exercise caution and attempt to verify information through appropriate official channels before reporting.”

The official who spoke to the AP did so on condition of anonymity and stood by the information even after it was disputed. A news briefing was scheduled later Wednesday.

Law enforcement agencies had earlier pleaded for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help them solve the twin bombings. Police also gathered surveillance video from businesses around the finish line.

The bombs were made from ordinary kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and ball bearings to inflict maximum carnage, investigators and others close to the case said. But the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.

Investigators in white jumpsuits had fanned out across the streets, rooftops and awnings around the blast site in search of clues on Wednesday. They combed through debris amid the toppled orange sports drink dispensers, trash cans and sleeves of plastic cups strewn across the street at the marathon’s finish line.

President Barack Obama branded the attack an act of terrorism. Obama plans to attend an interfaith service Thursday in the victims’ honour in Boston.

Scores of victims of the Boston bombing remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries. Doctors who treated the wounded corroborated reports that the bombs were packed with shrapnel intended to cause mayhem. In addition to the 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition.

The trauma surgery chief at Boston Medical Center says most of the injuries his hospital treated after the marathon bombings were to the legs.

“We have a lot of lower extremity injuries, so I think the damage was low to the ground and wasn’t up,” Dr. Peter Burke said. “The patients who do have head injuries were blown into things or were hit by fragments that went up.”

Dozens of patients have been released from hospitals around the Boston area.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said Tuesday. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood. The blasts near the finish line instantly turned the festive race into a hellish scene of confusion, horror and heroics.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

•••

BOSTON (AP) — U.S. officials denied a suspect was under arrest Wednesday in the deadly Boston Marathon bombings.

A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation told The Associated Press earlier in the day that a suspect was in custody. But the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office in Boston said no arrests had been made.

The official who spoke to the AP did so on condition of anonymity and stood by the information even after it was disputed. The official, who was not authorized to divulge details of the investigation, had said the suspect was expected in federal court in Boston. Reporters and police converged at the courthouse.

Several media outlets reported that a suspect had been identified from surveillance video taken at a Lord & Taylor department store between the sites of Monday’s two bomb blasts, which killed three people and wounded more than 170. The dead included a child, a young woman and a female student from China.

A news briefing was scheduled later Wednesday.

“Contrary to widespread reporting, there have been no arrests made in connection with the Boston Marathon attack,” the FBI said in a statement. “Over the past day and a half, there have been a number of press reports based on information from unofficial sources that has been inaccurate. Since these stories often have unintended consequences, we ask the media, particularly at this early stage of the investigation, to exercise caution and attempt to verify information through appropriate official channels before reporting.”

President Barack Obama called the attack on the world’s most famous marathon an act of terrorism. Obama planned to attend an interfaith service Thursday in the victims’ honour in Boston.

Law enforcement agencies had pleaded for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help them solve the twin bombings near the race’s finish line. The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart just next to the race course, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood. The blasts went off minutes after the four-hour mark of the race.

The bombs involved kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and other lethal shrapnel. But the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.

An intelligence bulletin issued to law enforcement includes a picture of a mangled pressure cooker and a torn black bag that the FBI said were part of a bomb that exploded during the marathon.

Authorities have recovered a piece of circuit board that they believe was part of one of the explosive devices, and they found the lid of a pressure cooker that apparently was catapulted onto the roof of a nearby building, a law enforcement official said Wednesday. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because this person was not authorized to publicly discuss evidence in the ongoing investigation.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

Scores of victims remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries. A 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition.

The trauma surgery chief at Boston Medical Center says most of the injuries his hospital treated were to the legs.

“We have a lot of lower extremity injuries, so I think the damage was low to the ground and wasn’t up,” Dr. Peter Burke said. “The patients who do have head injuries were blown into things or were hit by fragments that went up.”

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said Tuesday. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

Pressure-cooker explosives have been used in Afghanistan, India, Nepal and Pakistan, according to a July 2010 intelligence report by the FBI and the Homeland Security Department. One of the three devices used in the May 2010 Times Square attempted bombing in New York City was a pressure cooker, the report said.

“Placed carefully, such devices provide little or no indication of an impending attack,” the report said.

But information on how to make the bombs is readily found online, and U.S. officials said Americans should not rush to judgment in linking the attack to overseas terrorists.

•••

BOSTON — Federal officials deny that a Boston Marathon bombings suspect is in custody.

Confusion over reports in the media.

•••

(Earlier story)

BOSTON (AP) — A suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings was taken into custody Wednesday in a breakthrough that came less than 48 hours after the deadly attack, a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation said Wednesday.

The official spoke shortly after several media outlets reported that a suspect had been identified from surveillance video taken at a Lord & Taylor store between the sites of the two bomb blasts, which killed three people and wounded more than 170.

The official was not authorized to divulge details of the investigation and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The suspect was expected at a Boston courthouse, the official said.

A news briefing was scheduled later Wednesday.

Law enforcement agencies had earlier pleaded for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help them solve the twin bombings.

Investigators circulated information about the bombs, which involved kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and other lethal shrapnel. But the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.

A person close to the investigation had previously told AP the bombs consisted of explosives put in 1.6-gallon pressure cookers, one with shards of metal and ball bearings, the other with nails.

Investigators in white jumpsuits had fanned out across the streets, rooftops and awnings around the blast site in search of clues on Wednesday. They combed through debris amid the toppled orange sports drink dispensers, trash cans and sleeves of plastic cups strewn across the street at the marathon’s finish line.

President Barack Obama branded the attack an act of terrorism. Obama plans to attend an interfaith service Thursday in the victims’ honour in Boston.

Scores of victims of the Boston bombing remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries. Doctors who treated the wounded corroborated reports that the bombs were packed with shrapnel intended to cause mayhem. In addition to the 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition.

The trauma surgery chief at Boston Medical Center says most of the injuries his hospital treated after the marathon bombings were to the legs.

“We have a lot of lower extremity injuries, so I think the damage was low to the ground and wasn’t up,” Dr. Peter Burke said. “The patients who do have head injuries were blown into things or were hit by fragments that went up.”

Dozens of patients have been released from hospitals around the Boston area.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said Tuesday. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood. The blasts near the finish line instantly turned the festive race into a hellish scene of confusion, horror and heroics.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

•••

(Earlier story)

BOSTON (AP) — A suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings is about to be arrested, a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation said Wednesday.

The official was not authorized to divulge details of the investigation and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The suspect was to be taken into custody by federal marshals and taken to a Boston courthouse, the official said.

The official spoke shortly after several media outlets reported that a suspect had been identified from surveillance video taken at a Lord & Taylor store between the two bomb blasts.

An official news briefing was scheduled later Wednesday.

Law enforcement agencies had earlier pleaded for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help them solve the twin bombings that killed three people and wounded more than 170 on Monday.

Investigators circulated information about the bombs, which involved kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and other lethal shrapnel. But the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.

A person close to the investigation had previously told AP the bombs consisted of explosives put in 1.6-gallon pressure cookers, one with shards of metal and ball bearings, the other with nails.

Investigators in white jumpsuits had fanned out across the streets, rooftops and awnings around the blast site in search of clues on Wednesday. They combed through debris amid the toppled orange sports drink dispensers, trash cans and sleeves of plastic cups strewn across the street at the marathon’s finish line.

President Barack Obama branded the attack an act of terrorism. Obama plans to attend an interfaith service Thursday in the victims’ honour in Boston.

Scores of victims of the Boston bombing remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries. Doctors who treated the wounded corroborated reports that the bombs were packed with shrapnel intended to cause mayhem. In addition to the 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition.

The trauma surgery chief at Boston Medical Center says most of the injuries his hospital treated after the marathon bombings were to the legs.

“We have a lot of lower extremity injuries, so I think the damage was low to the ground and wasn’t up,” Dr. Peter Burke said. “The patients who do have head injuries were blown into things or were hit by fragments that went up.”

Dozens of patients have been released from hospitals around the Boston area.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said Tuesday. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

An intelligence bulletin issued to law enforcement includes a picture of a mangled pressure cooker and a torn black bag that the FBI said were part of a bomb that exploded during the marathon.

The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood. The blasts near the finish line instantly turned the festive race into a hellish scene of confusion, horror and heroics.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

•••

(Earlier story)

BOSTON — Authorities investigating the deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon have recovered a piece of circuit board that they believe was part of one of the explosive devices, and also found the lid of a pressure cooker that apparently was catapulted onto the roof of a nearby building, an official said Wednesday.

A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation confirmed to The Associated Press that authorities have recovered what they believe are some of the pieces of the explosive devices. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because this person was not authorized to publicly discuss evidence in the ongoing investigation.

A person close to the investigation previously told AP the bombs consisted of explosives put in 1.6-gallon (6.06-litre) pressure cookers, one with shards of metal and ball bearings, the other with nails.

Also on Wednesday, a doctor at Boston Medical Center said two patients, including a 5-year-old child, remain in critical condition there. Dozens of others have been released from hospitals around Boston.

Law enforcement agencies pleaded Tuesday for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help them solve the twin bombings that killed three people and wounded more than 170 a day earlier. Investigators circulated information about the bombs, which involved kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and other lethal shrapnel — but the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.

“Someone knows who did this,” Richard DesLauriers, FBI agent in charge in Boston, said at a news conference where he detailed the type of clues a bomber might have left. “Importantly, the person who did this is someone’s friend, neighbour, co-worker or relative.”

President Barack Obama branded the attack an act of terrorism but said officials don’t know “whether it was planned and executed by a terrorist organization, foreign or domestic, or was the act of a malevolent individual.” Obama plans to attend an interfaith service Thursday in the victims’ honour in Boston.

Scores of victims of the Boston bombing remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries. Doctors who treated the wounded corroborated reports that the bombs were packed with shrapnel intended to cause mayhem. In addition to the 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition.

The trauma surgery chief at Boston Medical Center says most of the injuries his hospital treated after the marathon bombings were to the lower legs.

“We have a lot of lower extremity injuries, so I think the damage was low to the ground and wasn’t up,” Dr. Peter Burke said. “The patients who do have head injuries were blown into things or were hit by fragments that went up.”

Dozens of patients have been released from hospitals around the Boston area.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said Tuesday. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

An intelligence bulletin issued to law enforcement includes a picture of a mangled pressure cooker and a torn black bag that the FBI said were part of a bomb that exploded during the marathon.

DesLauriers said co-operation from the community will play a key role in the investigation. He said the range of suspects remained wide open, but by midday Tuesday more than 2,000 tips had been received.

The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood. The blasts near the finish line instantly turned the festive race into a hellish scene of confusion, horror and heroics.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

Officials found that the bombs in Boston consisted of explosives put in ordinary, 1.6-gallon pressure cookers, one with shards of metal and ball bearings, the other with nails, according to a person close to the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity because the probe was still going on.

Both bombs were stuffed into black bags and left on the ground, the person said.

DesLauriers confirmed that investigators had found pieces of black nylon from a bag or backpack and fragments of BBs and nails, possibly contained in a pressure cooker. He said the items were sent to the FBI laboratory at Quantico, Virginia, for analysis.

Pressure-cooker explosives have been used in international terrorism, and have been recommended for lone-wolf operatives by al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen.

But information on how to make the bombs is readily found online, and U.S. officials said Americans should not rush to judgment in linking the attack to overseas terrorists.

Pressure-cooker explosives have been used in Afghanistan, India, Nepal and Pakistan, according to a July 2010 intelligence report by the FBI and the Homeland Security Department. One of the three devices used in the May 2010 Times Square attempted bombing was a pressure cooker, the report said.

“Placed carefully, such devices provide little or no indication of an impending attack,” the report said.

Investigators in the Boston bombing were combing surveillance tapes from businesses around the finish line and asking travellers at Logan Airport to share any photos or video that might help.

“This is probably one of the most photographed areas in the country yesterday,” said Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis. He said two security sweeps of the marathon route had been conducted before the blasts.

•••

(Earlier story)

BOSTON — FBI agents zeroed in Wednesday on how the Boston Marathon bombing was carried out — with kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and other lethal shrapnel — but said they still didn’t know who did it and why..

An intelligence bulletin issued to law enforcement and released late Tuesday includes a picture of a mangled pressure cooker and a torn black bag the Federal Bureau of Investigation says were part of a bomb.

The FBI and other prominent law enforcement agencies repeatedly pleaded for members of the public to come forward with photos, videos or anything suspicious they might have seen or heard.

President Barack Obama branded the attack an act of terrorism but said officials don’t know “whether it was planned and executed by a terrorist organization, foreign or domestic, or was the act of a malevolent individual.”

Richard DesLauriers, FBI agent in charge in Boston, said at a news conference that the “range of suspects and motives remains wide open.” He vowed to “go to the ends of the Earth to identify the subject or subjects who are responsible for this despicable crime.”

Scores of victims of the Boston bombing remained in hospitals, many with grievous injuries, a day after the twin explosions near the marathon’s finish line killed three people, wounded more than 170 and reawakened fears of terrorism. A 5-year-old child, a 9-year-old girl and 10-year-old boy were among 17 victims listed in critical condition

Heightening jitters in Washington, where security already had been tightened after the bombing, a letter addressed to a senator and poisoned with ricin or a similarly toxic substance was intercepted at a mail facility outside the capital, lawmakers said.

There was no immediate indication the episode was related to the Boston attack. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the letter was sent to Republican Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi.

Officials found that the bombs in Boston consisted of explosives put in ordinary, 1.6-gallon (6-litre) pressure cookers, one with shards of metal and ball bearings, the other with nails, according to a person close to the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity because the probe was still going on.

Both bombs were stuffed into black duffel bags and left on the ground, the person said.

Investigators said Wednesday they recovered a piece of circuit board they believe was part of one of the explosive devices, also found on the lid of a pressure cooker.

DesLauriers confirmed that investigators had found pieces of black nylon from a bag or backpack and fragments of BBs and nails, possibly contained in a pressure cooker. He said the items were sent to the FBI laboratory at Quantico, Virginia, for analysis.

The FBI said it is looking at what Boston television station WHDH said are photos sent by a viewer that show the scene right before and after the bombs went off. The photo shows something next to a mailbox that appears to be a bag, but it’s unclear what the significance is.

“We’re taking a look at hundreds of photos and that’s one of them,” said Jason Pack, FBI spokesman in Boston.

Investigators said they have not yet determined what was used to set off the explosives.

Pressure-cooker explosives have been used in international terrorism, and have been recommended for lone-wolf operatives by Al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen.

But information on how to make the bombs is readily found online, and U.S. officials said Americans should not rush to judgment in linking the attack to overseas terrorists.

DesLauriers said there had been no claim of responsibility for the attack.

He urged people to come forward with anything suspicious, such as hearing someone express an interest in explosives or a desire to attack the marathon, seeing someone carrying a dark heavy bag at the race, or hearing mysterious explosions recently.

“Someone knows who did this,” the FBI agent said.

The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart, tearing off victims’ limbs and spattering streets with blood, instantly turning the festive race into a hellish scene of confusion, horror and heroics.

The blasts killed 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford, Massachusetts. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi from the northeastern Chinese city. She was a graduate student at Boston University.

The Chinese Consulate in New York said in a statement Tuesday that another Chinese citizen was wounded and was in stable condition following surgery.

Doctors who treated the wounded corroborated reports that the bombs were packed with shrapnel intended to cause mayhem.

“One of the sickest things for me was just to see nails sticking out of a little girl’s body,” said Dr. David Mooney, director of the trauma centre at Boston Children’s Hospital.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, all four amputations performed there were above the knee, with no hope of saving more of the legs, said Dr. George Velmahos, chief of trauma surgery.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he said. “We just completed the ugly job that the bomb did.”

Obama plans to visit Boston on Thursday to attend an interfaith service in honour of the victims. He has travelled four times to cities reeling from mass violence, most recently in December after the schoolhouse shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

In the wake of the attack, security was stepped up around the White House and across the country. Police massed at federal buildings and transit centres in Washington, critical response teams deployed in New York City, and security officers with bomb-sniffing dogs spread through Chicago’s Union Station.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said that the stepped-up security was a precaution and that there was no evidence the bombings were part of a wider plot.

Pressure-cooker explosives have been used in Afghanistan, India, Nepal and Pakistan, according to a July 2010 intelligence report by the FBI and the Homeland Security Department. One of the three devices used in the May 2010 Times Square attempted bombing was a pressure cooker, the report said.

“Placed carefully, such devices provide little or no indication of an impending attack,” the report said.

The Pakistani Taliban, which claimed responsibility for the 2010 attempt in Times Square, has denied any part in the Boston Marathon attack.

Al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen gave a detailed description of how to make a bomb using a pressure cooker in a 2010 issue of Inspire, its English-language online publication aimed at would-be terrorists acting alone.

In a chapter titled “Make a bomb in the kitchen of your mom,” it says “the pressurized cooker is the most effective method” for making a simple bomb, and it provides directions.

Naser Jason Abdo, a former U.S. soldier, was sentenced to life in prison last year after being convicted of planning to use a pair of bombs made from pressure cookers in an attack on a Texas restaurant frequented by soldiers from Fort Hood. He was found with the Inspire article.

Investigators in the Boston bombing are also combing surveillance tapes from businesses around the finish line and asking travellers at Logan Airport to share any photos or video that might help.

“This is probably one of the most photographed areas in the country yesterday,” said Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis. He said two security sweeps of the marathon route had been conducted before the bombing.

Boston police and firefighter unions announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to arrests.

Organizations: Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI laboratory, Al-Qaida Homeland Security Department Shenyang Evening News Boston University.The Chinese Consulate Boston Children Hospital.At Massachusetts General Hospital Logan Airport

Geographic location: Boston, Washington, U.S. New York City Quantico Virginia Times Square Medford, Massachusetts Chicago Afghanistan India Nepal Pakistan Yemen Texas Fort Hood

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Recent comments

  • Andrea
    April 17, 2013 - 17:48

    Pardon me but our nerves are anything but frayed. We are the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!

  • Anon
    April 17, 2013 - 16:43

    Quick! Look over here! A distraction! No need to concern yourselves with the market crash monday, the near 10 percent drop in the price of gold or the legislature protecting insider traders in government and intelligence agencies. Nope. Nothing to see here. Look! a distraction in Boston! What convenient timing for a terrorist attack. Seems to fit a pattern if you're keen on your 21st century history.