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DNA Confirms Death of Terrorist Leader Noordin Top


Indonesian authorities have confirmed that a man killed in a shootout with police this week is terrorist leader Noordin Top.

National police spokesman Nanan Sukarna said Saturday that DNA tests supported findings of an earlier fingerprint identification.

Noordin was one of four people killed in a raid Thursday on a militant hideout in Central Java. Three others were arrested.

Police mistakenly announced last month that Noordin was killed in another raid.

The United States said Thursday that Indonesia has potentially taken a "significant step forward" in its fight against militants.

Noordin led a breakaway faction of the Southeast Asian terrorist network Jemaah Islamiyah. The group has links to al-Qaida and has carried out a string of bombings in Indonesia in recent years.

Noordin most recently was suspected of masterminding suicide bombings that killed seven people at two Jakarta hotels in July.

Indonesian authorities say Bagus Budi Pranato, an alleged bomb maker linked to those bombings, was also killed in the raid.

Police involved in the operation seized documents, laptops and weapons from the militant hideout in Solo following a gunfight that ended in an explosion.

A U.S. State Department spokesman, Philip Crowley, said Thursday the United States did not participate in the operation, or provide information leading to it.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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