In Indonesia, bomb squads sweep churches

Police are warned that al-Qaida-linked terrorists could be plotting Christmas attacks.

December 25, 2005 02:39
1 minute read.
In Indonesia, bomb squads sweep churches

aceh boys 88. (photo credit: )


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Bomb squads swept churches for explosives and security guards dressed as Santa Claus searched cars after police warned that al-Qaida-linked terrorists could be plotting Christmas terror attacks. Thousands of troops were also on guard. Though most of Indonesia's 190 million Muslims practice a moderate form of the faith, attacks against Christians and Westerners have increased in recent years amid a global rise in Islamic radicalism. Suicide bombings and at least three recent beheadings have put many on edge. Maj. Gen. Firman Gani, the Jakarta police chief, said Saturday that Jemaah Islamiyah terrorists "could carry out" an attack on Christmas to retaliate for the death last month of bomb-making expert Azahari bin Husin, who was gunned down in a police raid. Jemaah Islamiyah was blamed for near simultaneous Christmas Eve church bombings in 2000 and five suicide attacks targeting Western interests since then - including the October 1 restaurant strikes on the resort island of Bali. Together, more than 260 people have died, many of them foreign tourists. Some 47,000 soldiers and police have been deployed nationwide to guard houses of worship, hotels, clubs, restaurants and shopping centers. Even security guards dressed as Santa Claus were taking part, searching beneath cars for explosives at the glitzy Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Jakarta. Police Lt. Sulianto said 80 bomb squads were sweeping churches in the capital and in the neighboring cities of Bekasi, Tangerang and Depok hours before midnight Mass. The ceremonies proceeded without incident nationwide, security officials and religious leaders said. The United States, Australia and several other governments have urged their citizens against travel to Indonesia over the holidays, saying the chance for a terror attack is very high.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

A fighter of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) holds an ISIL flag and a weapon.
May 22, 2019
UN envoy to Iraq calls for international support to prevent IS resurgence