NEW YORK — Heavily armed police officers will greet many Jews observing the Sabbath today, following the discovery of explosives bound for Chicago synagogues on Friday.

Two packages containing the industrial explosive PETN originated in Yemen, but were intercepted in Dubai and the United Kingdom before reaching the United States. President Barack Obama called the thwarted attacks a “credible terrorist threat,” and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano told CNN that the plot has the “hallmarks of al Qaeda.”

Police received a tip Friday about potential explosives on a FedEx flight traveling from Yemen to Dubai. Cooperation from the Saudi government allowed officials to track the packages to Dubai and the United Kingdom.

The Transportation Security Administration halted all shipments originating from Yemen Friday, including FedEx, UPS, and DHL packages.

In New York, heavily armed police officers stationed around the city are not in Halloween costume. NYPD’s elite Hercules unit guarded an Upper East Side synagogue on Friday, and the Post reports police continue to patrol high-profile synagogues in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Airports nationwide remain on high alert. Travelers should expect heightened security measures and cargo screenings in the coming days, and allow more time to pass through airport security.

About The Author

Ann Crews Melton is a Blast correspondent

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