Police say Jakarta attack funded by Islamic State group in Syria

JAKARTA, Indonesia -- An audacious attack in the heart of Indonesia's capital by suicide bombers was funded by the Islamic State group, police said Friday, as they arrested three men on suspicion of links to the plot and seized an IS flag from one of the bombers.

See Full Article

National police chief Gen. Badrodin Haiti told reporters that Thursday's attack was funded by IS through Bahrun Naim, an Indonesian who spent one year in jail for illegal possession of weapons in 2011, and is now in Syria fighting for the Islamic State.

Supporters of the Islamic State group also circulated a claim of responsibility for the attack on Twitter late Thursday. The radical group controls territory in Syria and Iraq, and its ambition to create an Islamic caliphate has attracted some 30,000 foreign fighters from around the world, including a few hundred Indonesians and Malaysians.

The IS link, if proved, poses a grave challenge to Indonesian security forces. Until now, the group was known only to have sympathizers with no active cells capable of planning and carrying out a plan such as Thursday's in which five men attacked a Starbucks cafe and a traffic police booth with hand-made bombs, guns and suicide belts. They killed two people -- a Canadian and an Indonesian -- and injured 20. The attackers were killed subsequently, either by their suicide vests or by police.

The attack "was funded by ISIS in Syria through Bahrun Naim," Haiti told reporters after Friday prayers, using an acronym for the Islamic State. He did not elaborate.

He also identified one of the five attackers as Sunakim, who was once sentenced to seven years in jail for his involvement in military-style terrorist training in Aceh, but was released early.

Also Friday, police arrested three men at dawn in their homes in Depok on the outskirts of Jakarta, and more raids were being conducted in Java, Kalimantan and Sulawesi provinces based on evidence found at the scene, national police spokesman Maj. Gen. Anton Charliyan said.

"Now we can be sure that it was the action of ISIS because ISIS' flag was found in the house of one of the suspects," he said. "Hopefully, the group's (other) members will be captured soon."

In recent years, Indonesian anti-terror forces had successfully stamped out another extremist group known as Jemaah Islamiyah. It was responsible for several attacks in Indonesia, including the 2002 bombings of bars in Bali, which left 202 people dead, as well as two hotel bombings in Jakarta in 2009 that killed seven people.

Terrorism experts say IS supporters in Indonesia are drawn from the remnants of Jemaah Islamiyah.

Jakarta residents were shaken by Thursday's events but refused to be cowed.

The area near the Starbucks cafe remained cordoned off with a highly visible police presence. Onlookers and journalists lingered, with some people leaving flowers and messages of support.

A large screen atop the building containing the Starbucks displayed messages that said ".prayforjakarta" and "Indonesia Unite."

Newspapers carried bold front-page headlines declaring the country was united in condemnation of the attack, which was the first in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim-majority nation, since the hotel bombings in 2009.

Risti Amelia, an accountant at a company near the Starbucks said she was "still shaking and weak" when she returned to her office Friday. Because staff remained emotional, the company decided to send workers home, she said.

Supporters of the Islamic State group circulated a claim of responsibility on Twitter late Thursday. The message said attackers carried out the Jakarta assault and had planted several bombs with timers. It differed from Indonesian police on the number of attackers, saying there were four.

The statement could not be independently verified by The Associated Press, though it resembled previous claims made by the group.

Taufik Andri, a terrorist analyst, said although the attack ended swiftly and badly for the attackers, their aim was to show their presence and ability.

"Their main aim was just to give impression that ISIS' supporters here are able to do what was done in Paris. It was just a Paris-inspired attack without being well-prepared," he told The Associated Press. Those attacks in November killed 130 people.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Senate confirms Mike Pompeo to run the CIA

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- The Senate on Monday confirmed President Donald Trump's nominee to run the CIA despite some Democratic objections that Rep. Mike Pompeo has been less than transparent about his positions on torture, surveillance and Russia's meddling in the U.S. Source
  • UN calls for end to South Sudan fighting

    World News CTV News
    The UN Security Council called Monday for a halt to fighting in South Sudan and swift deployment of a new contingent of 4,000 peacekeepers to boost the existing UN force in the conflict-wracked African nation. Source
  • Quebec class action lawsuit seeks damages for solitary confinement

    Canada News CTV News
    A class action lawsuit has been certified in Quebec that alleges federal prisons are abusing a practice known as “administrative segregation,” which the lawsuit’s backers call “solitary confinement.” Former federal inmate Arlene Gallone is representing the prisoners. Source
  • Kevin O'Leary challenges Premier Kathleen Wynne to call an election

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    The war of words between Ontario’s Liberal government and Kevin O’Leary got nastier Monday as the federal Conservative leadership candidate challenged Premier Kathleen Wynne to call a snap election. Calling Wynne “out of touch,” O’Leary dared her to seek a new mandate from Ontario’s voters, in a letter posted to his Facebook page. Source
  • Minnesota officer charged with punching handcuffed teen in face

    World News Toronto Sun
    ST. PAUL, MINN. - A St. Paul police officer was charged Monday with punching a 14-year-old girl twice in the face after she spit on him while handcuffed in the back of a squad car. Officer Michael Soucheray II faces a charge of misdemeanour assault. Source
  • ’She gambled away Ryan’s life’: Calgary mother ruled criminally negligent in son’s death

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    CALGARY — An Alberta judge says a Calgary woman who treated her son with holistic remedies before he died of a strep infection “gambled away” his life and is guilty of criminal negligence causing death. Justice Kristine Eidsvik also issued a judicial stay on a second charge against Tamara Lovett of failing to provide the necessaries of life. Source
  • Donald Trump's tweets are presidential records, but what about deletions?

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON - The National Archives and Records Administration considers President Donald Trump’s tweets as presidential records that need to be preserved for historic purposes, but an archives official said Monday that the agency has yet to say whether his administration will be required to keep altered or deleted tweets. Source
  • Three men guilty in B.C. teen's murder sentenced to life

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    VANCOUVER — Police say three men have been sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 18 years after pleading guilty in B.C. Supreme Court to second-degree murder charges in the slaying of a 19-year-old man. Source
  • Wildfires in Chile devastate livelihoods, destroy homes and livestock

    World News CTV News
    PUMANQUE, Chile - Lambs suffered broken legs trying to escape the blaze that tore across Tarcila Becerra's land. Today there's nothing on the blackened soil left for the few chickens that survived to graze on, and horses whinny in a makeshift stable a few blocks from her ravaged home. Source
  • White House press secretary Sean Spicer: 'Our intention is never to lie'

    World News Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK - White House press secretary Sean Spicer told a roomful of reporters that “our intention is never to lie to you,” although sometimes the Trump administration may “disagree with the facts.” Spicer’s first full press briefing was closely watched Monday following a weekend statement about President Donald Trump’s inauguration audience that included incorrect assertions. Source