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Indonesian police arrest 12 after Jakarta attack

Published 16/01/2016

Indonesian police officers on guard near the Starbucks cafe where the attack took place (AP)
Indonesian police officers on guard near the Starbucks cafe where the attack took place (AP)

Indonesian police have arrested 12 people suspected of links to the Jakarta bombings, they said on Saturday.

The audacious attacks by suicide bombers and gunmen on Thursday in central Jakarta killed seven people, including two civilians. It was the first major assault by militants in Indonesia since 2009 and police said the attackers were tied to the Islamic State group.

National police chief general Badrodin Haiti told reporters that arrests were made in west and east Java and in Kalimantan.

Elaborating on an earlier claim that the militants received funding via an Indonesian fighting with the IS in Syria, he said police have determined money was transferred to Indonesia via Western Union.

Separately, authorities say they have blocked more than a dozen websites expressing support for Thursday's attack as they try to counter radical Islamic ideology online.

Communications ministry spokesman Ismail Cawidu urged Indonesians to report militant websites and social media accounts.

In recent years, Indonesian counter-terrorism forces successfully stamped out the extremist group Jemaah Islamiyah that was responsible for several attacks, including the 2002 bombings of bars in Bali which killed 202 people, as well as two hotel bombings in Jakarta in 2009 that killed seven people.

Terrorism experts say IS supporters in Indonesia are drawn from the remnants of Jemaah Islamiyah and other groups but are also trying to recruit new members.

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