Friday, July 17, 2009

Indonesia attacked (Update: 9 Killed, 50 injured)

At least two improvised explosive devices (IED) detonated in the busy Mega Kuningan business district of downtown Jakarta, Indonesia today near the Ritz-Carlton and Marriott hotels. Sketchy reports say, the Ritz was heavily damaged.

As of presstime, at least 21 Indonesians and 19 foreigners were reportedly injured. (Latest from my good friend Thea Alberto: 9 already died while 50 are injured.)

Several foreign embassies are reportedly also located in the area. Local reports describe witnesses observing white smoke coming from several structures, while other buildings were being evacuated. Further details are sketchy at this point. It is unclear exactly where the devices were placed or how large they were, though some photos of the Ritz show damage that would be consistent with a small device being detonated inside. Early casualty reports described four people killed, though if the damage to the Ritz-Carlton is as extensive as described, the casualty count will likely rise.

This is the ninth time that terrorists, possibly belonging to the dreaded Jemaah Islamiyah attacked Indonesia. The bombing followed other terror attacks in the Middle East and in the Southern part of the Philippines.

We must condemn these attacks. Such attacks are not consistent with the teachings of Islam. For it is written in the Holy Qu'ran that attacks can only be permissible against armed enemies, not those who are peacefully doing their business about. Terror attacks such as these only confuse the non-believers and therefore, should not be one of the cocktails of any revolutionary group. This is pure and simple crime against humanity. It must be condemned by all.