June 23rd, 2010
10:42 AM ET

Indonesian police think they've captured wanted terror suspect

Police in Indonesia captured a man believed to be one of the most wanted terrorists in the country on Wednesday, authorities said.

He is Abdullah Sonata, an explosives expert. Sonata was thought to have recently returned from the Philippines and started recruiting and training militants. He is linked to the late militant Noordin Mohammed Top, responsible for terror bombings until he was killed last year by police. 

Police said they became engaged in a gun battle after they launched a raid in the central Javan district of Klaten. One person was shot dead and three were arrested, one of whom is believed to be Sonata.
The man thought to be Sonata will be fingerprinted to confirm his identity, officials said.

Noordin, killed in September, had been accused of involvement in July's twin suicide bombings at the Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta, the 2002 Bali nightclub bombing and attacks on the same Marriott hotel in Jakarta in 2003, as well as the Australian Embassy in 2004.

In the past year, police have launched a nationwide crackdown on militants, in which they have arrested or killed dozens of high-profile militants in the country, the most populated Muslim nation in the world. Police earlier this year raided a military training camp in the Aceh region formed by a group that calls itself al Qaeda of Aceh. Analysts said information gleaned about the camp indicates a possible change in tactics from bombings to military-style attacks and assassinations.

Its presence was a disturbing development for authorities who thought that Indonesia had the upper hand in the battle against homegrown terrorist networks.

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Filed under: Indonesia • Security Brief
soundoff (One Response)
  1. TowelHeadTown

    If they'd just catch all these Mohammud-following Dirty-Santa's then maybe everything will stop blowing up. Just be done with them already!

    June 23, 2010 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |