New York City, USA: Bangladesh native, 27-year-old Akayed Ullah, accused of carrying out a bombing in a New York Port Authority passageway, has been charged with supporting an act of terrorism, the New York Police Department, NYPD, said Tuesday.
He has also been charged with making a terroristic threat and criminal possession of a weapon, police said on Twitter Tuesday.
The charges came a day after Ullah allegedly detonated a pipe bomb strapped to his body in an underground passageway connecting the Times Square subway station and the Port Authority bus terminal.
The explosion did not kill anyone, but badly injured Ullah and slightly wounded three others.
Ullah said that he carried out the attack in retaliation for U.S. airstrikes on Islamic State militants, and chose the location in New York because of Christmas-themed posters there.
Ullah came to the U.S. from his native Bangladesh in 2011 on a visa for relatives of American citizens, and the White House and Justice Department have called for immigration reforms in the wake of the attack.
John Miller, NYPD’s deputy commissioner for counterterrorism and intelligence, said on CBS’s “This Morning” on Tuesday that Ullah was not on law enforcement’s radar before the Monday attack.
Federal charges are also expected to be filed against Ullah.
EARLIER : Akayed Ullah : NYC Pipe Bomb Explosion A Terror Attack – NYPD , Mayor Bill De Blasio – New York City Police Commissioner, James O’Neill, says a 27-year-old man from Bangladesh, Akayed Ullah, intentionally detonated a crudely-made pipe bomb strapped to his body in the New York City subway – Times Square during the morning rush hour Monday. .
Authorities called the incident an attempted terrorist attack. Three others suffered minor injuries, including headaches and ringing in the ears.
Ullah was found in the walkway, and the incident was captured on surveillance video.
Ullah suffered burns to his hands and abdomen and was taken into custody, according to the police commissioner. The suspect was transported to Bellevue Hospital.
“Preliminary investigation at the scene indicates this individual was wearing an improvised low-tech explosive device attached to his body,” Police Commissioner, James O’Neill said. “He intentionally detonated that device.”
The device was based on a pipe bomb and was attached to the suspect’s body with Velcro and zip ties, according to NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller. He said that bomb technicians and the FBI are examining the device to learn more about it.
Mayor Bill de Blasio also said the device that exploded in the New York City subway was an attempted terrorist attack. He says it’s lucky the suspect didn’t achieve his ultimate goals.
“This was an attempted terrorist attack,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “Thank God the perpetrator did not achieve his ultimate goals. Thank God our first responders were there so quickly, to address the situation.”
“It was an effectively low-tech device,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a news conference hours later near the site of the blast, calling the news of an explosion “very disturbing.”
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says he has ordered extra security at mass transit hubs in his state following the pipe bomb explosion in a passageway near Times Square in Manhattan.
New Jersey Transit buses have resumed normal service Monday into New York City’s Port Authority Bus Terminal.
New York City also has reopened its subways amid heightened city-wide security after Akayed Ullah, with a pipe bomb strapped to him caused an explosion in an underground passageway in the Times Square area during the morning rush hour.
EARLIER: 1 Suspect In custody After NYC Explosion – The New York Police Department, NYPD, says one suspect is in custody with non-life-threatening injuries – and that he’s the only person who was injured in the incident – after a ‘device’ exploded on New York City subway platform near Times Square.
The New York City Fire Department, FDNY, had earlier confirmed one non-life-threatening injury at the scene of the explosion, which struck at 42nd Street and 8th Avenue.
Shortly before 8 a.m. ET, police said a blast was reported at the Port Authority bus and subway station in Midtown. The NYPD say that in the city’s subway system, “The A, C and E line are being evacuated at this time.”
The Port Authority issued a tweet saying, “The Port Authority Bus Terminal is open. Due to police activity, the entrance to the subway at the Port Authority Bus Terminal on Eighth Avenue is closed.”
The police also say that the information “is preliminary” at this point.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office says that he has been briefed about the incident, adding, “The NYPD, FDNY and first responders are on the scene.”
President Trump “has been briefed on the explosion in New York City,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said via a tweet.
“Congress must end chain migration,” Trump said in a press release. “Congress must also act on my Administration’s other proposals to enhance domestic security, including increasing the number of Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, [and] enhancing… detention authorities.”
The US President added that the attempted mass murder attack in New York City highlights the urgent need for Congress to take these actions on immigration reform.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions also said in a press release that the explosion in the New York City subway was a consequence of US failed immigration policies.
“We have now seen two terrorist attacks in New York City in less than two months that were carried out by people who came here as the result of our failed immigration policies that do not serve the national interest,” Sessions said on Monday.
Sessions said the 20-year-old son of the sister of a US citizen should not get priority to stay in the country ahead of young professionals, entrepreneurs, and people who demonstrate desire to succeed.
The attorney general pointed out that President Donald Trump has been a long-time advocate of replacing the diversity lottery and chain migration with a merit-based system.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued the following statement on the attempted terrorist attack in New York City:
“The President is exactly correct about the changes we need to our immigration system. We have now seen two terrorist attacks in New York City in less than two months that were carried out by people who came here as the result of our failed immigration policies that do not serve the national interest—the diversity lottery and chain migration. The 20-year-old son of the sister of a U.S. citizen should not get priority to come to this country ahead of someone who is high-skilled, well educated, has learned English, and is likely to assimilate and flourish here.
“It is a failure of logic and sound policy not to adopt a merit-based immigration system. The President has asked Congress to work with him on ending the diversity lottery and chain migration. He has proposed switching to a merit-based system of immigration similar to the Canadian and Australian systems. That means welcoming the best and the brightest and turning away not only terrorists but gang members, fraudsters, drunk drivers, and child abusers. Such a merit-based system would make us safer and welcome individuals who would be best able to assimilate and flourish in our country.”
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) confirmed Ullah came to the United States from Bangladesh presenting a passport with a F-43 family immigrant visa. He obtained a lawful permanent resident status through family chain migration system.