Stephen Adams
London Telegraph
Sunday, Dec 27th, 2009

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian accused of trying to blow up Northwest Airlines Flight 253, defended the Taliban in classroom discussions, his high school teacher has said.

Abdulmutallab, now 23, believed the Taliban were “right and proper” to blow up the Bamiyan statues of Buddha in March 2001, said history teacher Mike Rimmer.

The terrorist suspect, accused of trying to detonate a bomb on board the Airbus A330 as it came in to land at Detroit airport on Christmas Day, also defended their crackdown on harmless activities such as kite flying.

At the time Mr Rimmer, a Briton who taught teenage Abdulmutallab at the British School of Lomé in Togo, west Africa, did not think such talk truly indicated extremist views.

Mr Rimmer described the Nigerian as a “model pupil” who was interested in world affairs.

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