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Jakarta Post

Police capture alleged masterminds behind Kalimantan police station terror attack

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, June 9, 2020   /   04:45 pm
Police capture alleged masterminds behind Kalimantan police station terror attack A terror suspect arrives at the National Police headquarters under tight security in Jakarta. In 2019, between January and April, 68 terror suspects linked with Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD) were arrested. (JP/Seto Wardhana)

The Indonesian National Police have apprehended two alleged masterminds, identified as TA and AS, behind a terror attack on a police station in South Daha district, South Kalimantan.

The two were captured on Friday by the National Police’s Densus 88 counterterrorism squad. 

According to the police, they were members of the South Kalimantan branch of Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), an Islamic State-linked extremist group responsible for a string of attacks, including suicide bombings at churches in Surabaya in 2018, which killed a dozen people.

TA, 24, was caught in Banjarbaru regency in the province on Friday. 

“TA knew about and co-planned the attack [on the South Daha Police Station],” said National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Awi Setiyono as quoted by kompas.com on Monday.

Later on Friday, Densus 88 captured AS, 33, in Tanah Bumbu regency.

Read also: Indonesia: Perennial issue of terrorist recidivism

In addition to knowing about and co-planning the attack, the two masterminds allegedly had other roles.

Awi said TA provided funding to make a sharp weapon that looked like a katana, which was used during the attack by AR, who was shot dead by the police while attacking.

“TA formed a small team in the JAD, providing money worth Rp 500,000 [US$35.49] to make the [sword],” Awi said.

TA also received the bai'at (pledge of allegiance) from five South Kalimantan JAD members, namely MZ, AR, AS, AN and MR. Meanwhile, AS planned the attack, which was to be delivered by the amaliyah (jihad operation) team.

On June 1, a sword-wielding militant killed an Indonesian policeman and critically injured another in what authorities described as a suspected IS-linked attack, AFP reported.

The National Police initially said there were two attackers, but local authorities later said that only AR attacked directly.

Read also: errorist group attacks Central Sulawesi village, killing police officer

"One police officer was killed and the attacker also died," South Hulu Sungai police chief Dedy Eka Jaya told AFP.

On the day of the attack, AR set a car on fire outside the police post, Jaya said.

"When [the car] exploded, one of the officers came out of the station to check the situation, and that was when the initial attack started," he added.

The deceased police officer, identified as Leonardo Latupapua, received an honorary award in the form of a promotion in the National Police after the incident. He died after being injured with the sharp weapon, kompas.com reported.

The police shot AR dead on the scene and confiscated the sword, a Quran, a handwritten letter calling for jihad and a flag bearing the tawhid, the Muslim expression of the belief in Allah as the one and only God, AFP reported.

According to the police’s investigation, AR was exposed to radicalism on the internet. Authorities said that AR had been receiving aid from other terrorists even though he was a lone wolf. (asp)