Jakarta: We've nabbed more terrorists than anyone

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April 24, 2006 14:23
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Indonesia's vice president said Monday the country has captured over 200 terrorists in two years, more than any other nation, as it cracks down on militants after a series of attacks in the world's most populous Muslim nation. "No country in the world has captured more terrorists than Indonesia has," Vice President Jusuf Kalla told reporters in the capital. Indonesia is seen by the United States as a close ally in the war on terror and is often praised for its tough stance on radical Islam. "We have captured some 200 terrorists in the past two years. Some of them are in jail or sentenced to death," he said. But while most of its 190 million citizens practice a moderate form of Islam, fundamental thought appears to be gaining a strong foothold, with five deadly attacks targeting Western interests since 2002. More than 240 people have died, many of them Indonesians. The radical Jemaah Islamiyah, which allegedly had cells throughout Southeast Asia before a crackdown in 2003, has been blamed for two attacks on Bali island where most were killed. It is also implicated in a 2003 blast at Jakarta's J.W. Marriott hotel that killed 12 and a 2004 bombing at the Australian Embassy. Among those in custody in Indonesia are Southeast Asia's alleged terror chief, Abu Bakar Bashir, and several of the masterminds in the 2002 and 2005 Bali bombings.

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