Indonesian authorities have recognized a not too long ago married couple with ties to the Islamic State-linked Jamaah Ansarud Daulah (JAD) as the principle suspects behind a suicide bombing Sunday that focused a Catholic church in Makassar, the provincial capital of South Sulawesi.
Referring to the couple by their initials solely, Listyo Sigit Prabowo, chief of the Indonesian Nationwide Police, stated suspects “L and YSF” — recognized by Indonesian media as a person named Lukman and his spouse, Dewi — had been married some six months prior by a JAD determine often called Rifaldi.
Indonesians generally have just one identify by which they’re addressed.
In accordance with Prabowo, Rifaldi was arrested in January and charged with involvement within the 2019 bombing of the Cathedral of Our Woman of Mount Carmel in Jolo, Philippines, which left 20 folks useless and dozens extra injured.
The police chief additionally stated Lukman had left a written farewell message to his dad and mom telling them he was “able to be martyred.”
In accordance with Indonesian officers, the suicide bombers approached the Cathedral of the Sacred Coronary heart of Jesus on a bike however had been intercepted on the gate by safety guards. They used a strain cooker with explosive supplies to blow themselves up exterior the packed church throughout its Palm Sunday Mass.
The assault reportedly wounded not less than 20 folks.
In a video interview with VOA’s Indonesian Service, Yaqut Cholil Qaumas, the Indonesian minister of faith, described the motion as “a heinous act that tarnished the tranquility of social life.”
“We attraction to spiritual leaders to proceed to enhance the sample of excellent spiritual educating and emphasize the significance of being spiritual moderately,” Qaumas stated. “All religions train their folks to keep away from acts of violence, since violence will solely erode human values and definitely hurt many events.”
The world’s largest Muslim-majority nation, Indonesia has for years suffered violent assaults impressed by the JAD and different lively militant teams similar to Islamic State (IS), Jemaah Islamiyah, and Laskar Jundullah Islamic Militia.
Based in 2015, JAD in 2017 was designated a terrorist group by the US for its connections to IS. Its chief, Aman Abdurrahman, was sentenced to loss of life in June 2018 for masterminding terror assaults and serving to arrange a jihadi coaching camp in Aceh province.
Sunday’s assault got here simply days after Common Boy Rafli Amar, head of Indonesia’s Nationwide Counter Terrorism Company, instructed the nation’s lawmakers final week that radicalization numbers amongst Indonesians have decreased from 55.2% in 2017 to 14% in 2020.
Whereas the flexibility of radical teams to assault new followers decreased as a result of coronavirus pandemic, Amar expressed the necessity to enhance vigilance on the widespread radical understanding in our on-line world.
Muhammad Syauqillah, a terrorism observer on the College of Indonesia, warned that violent extremist assaults are unlikely to vanish within the nation so long as “takfiri” ideology continues to exist. The Arabic time period has been broadly used within the Muslim neighborhood to discuss with smaller radical teams that accuse different Muslims of apostasy.
Syauqillah stated the timing of the assault almost two weeks earlier than the Muslim holy month of Ramadan comes as no shock since Islamist extremists search glorification earlier than or throughout the month “as a result of it’s believed to be a logo of victory.”