Visit our new website:

Indonesian anti-terror squad joins Philippines bomb probe

  • Wed, 06 Feb 2019 08:27
Tue, 2019-02-05 22:47

JAKARTA: An Indonesian anti-terror squad has been sent to the Philippines to help identify suicide bombers who attacked a Catholic church on Jolo island, killing 22 people.

National police spokesman Insp. Gen. Muhammad Iqbal told Arab News that three members of the Detachment 88 anti-terror unit and three officials from the national counterterrorism agency (BNPT), the Foreign Ministry and the national intelligence agency (BIN) left for Manila on Tuesday.

Philippines Interior Minister Eduardo Ano had earlier claimed that two Indonesians, a man identified only by his alias Abu Huda and his Indonesian wife, had carried out the suicide bombings on Jan. 27. 

However, Indonesia’s Chief Security Minister Wiranto on Monday cautioned the Philippines against making hasty, “one-sided” claims while the investigation was underway.

“They are still determining who the attackers were. There are still a lot of possibilities. So don’t rashly judge that they were Indonesians,” Wiranto said, calling on authorities to wait for the results of the investigation.

Sinyo Harry Sarundajang, Indonesia’s ambassador to the Philippines, said the embassy had been told by the Philippines’ Western Mindanao Command that the military had been unable to identify the attackers.

“We have asked the Philippines national police for more information,” the envoy said. “They haven’t released any DNA test results or CCTV footage from the crime scene to back the claims that Indonesian nationals were the attackers. 

“We can’t be certain that there were Indonesians involved in the bombing.”

Al Chaidar, a terrorism analyst from Universitas Malikussaleh in Aceh, told Arab News that he is certain the attackers were Indonesians, despite the government’s claims.

“The government has been denying that suicide bomb attacks carried out by a group of family members, such as the attacks in Surabaya last year, could be replicated elsewhere,” he said, referring to the deadly strikes that targeted churches and the East Java capital last May. 

However, he said it is unclear if the bombers were part of the Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), which was behind the Surabaya attacks. The JAD, a pro-Daesh Indonesian militant group, also carried out a fatal bomb attack in central Jakarta in January 2016.

“It is also still unclear where they were radicalized. But I believe they were not from Poso and part of the eastern Indonesia mujahideen. It is not the group’s signature style to carry out such an attack,” Chaidar said.

A number of Indonesian militants are believed to have been involved in the Marawi battle with Maute militants in 2017.

Indonesian and Filipino extremists have longstanding links, crisscrossing the porous coastal borders between Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines in Indonesia’s northern Sulawesi Sea and the Philippines’ Sulu Sea.

Main category: 
Philippines: Indonesians carried out Jolo cathedral suicide attackIndonesia seeks confirmation over Philippine cathedral suicide attack World


Harvard Business Review

Related Stories

Egypt official: Home-made bomb explodes near mosque, 3 hurt
  • Sat, 16 Feb 2019 01:19

Author: By MAGGIE MICHAEL | APID: 1550238667145584800Fri, 2019-02-15 12:55 CAIRO: An Egyptian security official says a home-made bomb has e...

Roadside bomb kills 8 fighters north of Baghdad
  • Thu, 14 Feb 2019 22:44

Thu, 2019-02-14 16:21 BAGHDAD: An Iraqi security official says a roadside bomb has exploded north of Baghdad, killing eight fighters from an armed g...

Philippines targets record tourist numbers in 2019
  • Wed, 13 Feb 2019 08:10

Author: Tue, 2019-02-12 23:04 MANILA: The Philippine Department of Tourism has vowed to break the 2018 record for the number of foreign tourist...

Senior Indonesian member of Daesh killed in Syria: police
  • Tue, 12 Feb 2019 20:21

Author: ReutersID: 1549963293610069500Tue, 2019-02-12 09:03 JAKARTA: An Indonesian militant who appeared on a Daesh propaganda video showin...

Group urges UN to probe Sudan’s use of force in protests
  • Mon, 11 Feb 2019 17:53

Author: Associated PressID: 1549874471112425900Mon, 2019-02-11 08:30 CAIRO: An international rights group is urging the United Nations to i...

Philippines hit by deadly measles outbreak
  • Fri, 08 Feb 2019 10:07

Author: Thu, 2019-02-07 22:26 MANILA: A growing measles outbreak in the Philippines killed at least 25 people last month, officials said Thursda...

Unconfirmed reports that key Abu Sayyaf leader killed in Philippines
  • Fri, 08 Feb 2019 07:33

Author: Zaynab KhojjiID: 1549558615251402000Thu, 2019-02-07 19:58 MANILA: A key leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), believed to have been...

Car bomb hits Damascus: Syrian state media
  • Thu, 24 Jan 2019 23:53

Author: ReutersID: 1548334087929325900Thu, 2019-01-24 12:41 BEIRUT: A car bomb exploded in the Al-Adawi neighbourhood of Syria’s capital ...

Governor convicted of blasphemy freed from Indonesian prison
  • Thu, 24 Jan 2019 13:49

Author: By STEPHEN WRIGHT and NINIEK KARMINI | APID: 1548299989927008100Thu, 2019-01-24 06:00JAKARTA, Indonesia: A polarizing Christian poli...

Car bomb explodes in Assad's Syria stronghold Latakia
  • Wed, 23 Jan 2019 02:09

Tue, 2019-01-22 16:39 BEIRUT: A car bomb detonated in Syria's government-held city of Latakia on Tuesday, killing the driver and injuring several oth...

Philippines arrests, hands over to China corruption fugitive
  • Wed, 16 Jan 2019 19:52

Author: Associated PressID: 1547617048994213100Wed, 2019-01-16 (All day) MANILA, Philippines: Philippine officials have turned over to Chin...