Indonesia: Several injured in church suicide bombing
29 March, 2021, 03:35
Two attackers blew themselves up outside a packed Roman Catholic cathedral during a Palm Sunday Mass on Indonesia's Sulawesi island, wounding at least 20 people, police said.
The BBC reports that two attackers approached the church on motorbikes and that the explosion happened as they tried to enter the compound.
Indonesian police carry a bag with the remains of a suspected suicide bomber after an explosion outside a church in Makassar.
"The bike was destroyed and there are body parts... we're still collecting parts and trying to identify the gender of the perpetrators".
Indonesia's deadliest Islamist militant attack took place on the tourist island of Bali in 2002, when bombers killed 202 people, majority foreign tourists. "Whatever the motive is, this attack can not be justified by any religion because it only does harm to other people", he said.
"State apparatus won't allow such terrorist actions and I call on people to worship calmly, because the state guarantees the security of worshippers to worship without fear".
At a press conference in Jakarta, the National Police's spokesman Argo Yuwono said police were conducting examinations on the perpetrators.
The police have set up a cordon around the church and a disaster victim identification team is investigating the incident.
Catholic worshippers in Indonesia are celebrating Palm Sunday, one week prior to Easter.
A priest also described as a suicide attack, But the blast's cause could not be independently verified by AFP and police did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
"A suicide bombing occurred at the cathedral in Makassar", Indonesia's chief security minister Mahfud MD told reporters in the capital Jakarta.
About 64 suspects had been detained by Indonesia's counterterrorism squad, known as Densus 88, in several provinces, including 19 last month in Makassar.
Police blamed that on an extremist group inspired by the Islamic State.
Jemaah Islamiyah was once considered the preeminent terror network in Southeast Asia, but has been weakened over the past decade by a sustained crackdown.
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