Terrorists may use toiletries to smuggle explosives onto planes headed for Sochi

Airlines warned of possible toothpaste tube bombs ahead of Olympics

Washington (CNN) — The United States is advising airlines with direct flights serving Russia to be aware of the possibility that explosive materials could be concealed in toothpaste or cosmetic tubes, the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee said Wednesday night.

Rep. Michael McCaul said the Department of Homeland Security issued a bulletin to airlines flying into Russia warning of the potential threat.

The bulletin, the Texas Republican said, indicated that officials believed the explosives might be used during flights or smuggled into the city of Sochi, where competition at the Winter Olympics begins Thursday. The opening ceremony is Friday.

A U.S. law enforcement official told CNN that the cause for the Homeland Security alert was specific to the imminent start of the Games.

According to the source, authorities have increasing confidence about the safety of Sochi and the Olympic venues. Still, U.S. intelligence is picking up increasing chatter that causes worry about targets outside of the Sochi area, including regional transportation links.

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