Islam is against terrorism — that was the message dozens of protesters wanted to convey in downtown Detroit as the man accused of trying to blow up a US bound transatlantic airliner refused to plea to the charges.
Earlier, Umar Farouk Abdullmutallab appeared in front of a federal judge to face charges, including the attempted murder of 290 people and trying to use a weapon of mass destruction.
The judge decided to enter a not guilty plea after the 23 year-old Nigerian declined to answer.
US officials say Abdulmutallab tried to ignite explosives concealed in his clothing aboard a Delta northwest airlines flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas Day.
US president Barack Obama has admitted there were major security and intelligence shortcomings.
He’s promised a shakeup:
“We will strengthen our defences, but we will not succumb to a siege mentality that sacrifices the open society and liberties and values that we cherish as Americans. We develop new screening technologies and procedures, our adversaries will seek new ways to evade them, as was shown by the Christmas attack. In the never ending race to protect our country, we have to stay one step ahead of a nimble adversary.”
That will almost certainly mean full body scans at airports and hundreds of extra air marshalls.
The rules for issuing visas to the US will also be reviewed.
President Obama admitted the buck ultimately stopped with him, but urged intelligence officials to do their jobs better and faster.