Archipelago

Densus 88 kill terror suspects
in Makassar

Two suspected terrorists were killed during a raid by the police anti-terror squad Densus 88 at the Wahidin Sudirohusodo regional hospital in Makassar, South Sulawesi, on Friday, while two others were arrested several hours later as they were trying to escape.

The dead suspects were identified as Syamsuddin, alias Asmar alias Buswah, and Hasan, alias Kholiq.

The bodies of both were sent to Jakarta for autopsy after undergoing initial medical examinations at the police’s Bhayangkara hospital in Makassar.

The identities of the arrested suspects as well as where they are being detained have yet to be disclosed but they were confirmed as belonging to the same group as the dead suspects.

They were arrested near Daya market, Makassar, at 3 p.m. local time. One of the suspects was shot in the leg.

“They have been on Densus 88’s wanted list. They are active terrorists,” head of South Sulawesi Police’s public relations division, Sr. Comr. Endi Sutendi, said on Friday.

Speaking to The Jakarta Post, Endi said that he was unable to determine whether the four were connected to the Poso network. “They could be, especially as South Sulawesi borders Central Sulawesi. Densus 88 is still investigating,” he said.

The raid was conducted at 10:45 a.m. local time. Witnesses said the raid was over quickly. The suspects were sitting in the hospital’s Al Nur Afiah Mosque as dozens of Densus 88 officers surrounded the mosque.

The witnesses said they did not realize they were police personnel because the officers were in civilian clothes. Some were wearing shorts.

“All of a sudden one of them entered the mosque and pointed a gun at one of the people sitting near the mosque door. After that we heard gun shots,” the hospital’s parking manager, Rahman, said.

He said he saw one man fall to the ground in front of the mosque’s stairs. Another fell on the road in front of the mosque, both were put in a car. Some people were then seen picking up bullet casings before leaving.

“It’s very quick. It lasted only about five minutes,” Rahman said.

Another witness, Ridwan Winandar, 32, of Nabire, Papua, said he had been meeting one of the four suspects at the mosque since Wednesday evening and had chatted with him but they had not introduced themselves.

“Last night [Thursday] I had a talk with him in this mosque. I stayed at the mosque until 11 p.m. and he was still here.

This morning I met him at the hospital when he looked like he was about to have a wash,” said Ridwan who was accompanying his daughter at the hospital.

Paper Edition | Page: 5

Post Your Say

Selected comments will be published in the Readers’ Forum page of our print newspaper.