News / Asia

Security Experts say Indonesian Terrorism Threat Growing

Multimedia

Audio

Recently Indonesia police received praise for dismantling a terrorist training camp and killing a leading terror suspect.  But security experts say these police raids also indicate a growing terrorism threat in Indonesia.

Since a deadly bombing attack on hotels in Jakarta last year, Indonesian security forces have tracked down the militants responsible and prevented other attacks.

They also killed Noordin Top, the leader of the group that carried out the attack on the Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels.  And they hunted down and killed a man known as Dulmantin, who had long been on Indonesia's most-wanted list, suspected of being involved in a 2002 attack on the island of Bali.

While the security forces have been praised for these actions, Andi Widjajanto, a military analyst from the University of Indonesia, is concerned that the increased police activity also indicates an increased level of militant activity.

"I think after the Marriott and (Ritz) Carlton 2009, after the raid of Aceh and Pamulang, there is a strong indication that the network is getting stronger and stronger," Widjajanto said. "It is not getting weaker."

Sidney Jones, a terrorism analyst with the International Crisis Group, says security experts are now learning of a growing alliance of militant groups in Southeast Asia.  Some are made up of disaffected members of the regional terror group Jemaah Islamiyah, who feel it has become too passive.

She says these groups have been operating since 2008 and many of the militants had served prison sentences for past terrorist activities. This new information she says reflects poorly on police. "The evidence of this group shows the weakness of intelligence.  Why did it take so long to realize that released prisoners were involved in the planning of this?  Terribly weak monitoring of prisons, prisoners and ex-prisoners and a poor understanding of radicalization and recruitment," Jones states.

She says the security forces should be more proactive in monitoring what she calls high-risk suspects. "When there are people that we know who have been involved with Noordin (Top), or have been involved in violence, who have served their sentences and who are about to get released, and who have been visited regularly by fellow prisoners who have been released, you would think it would trigger something that these people are high risks, so there should be a way of designating some kind of special category for more intensive monitoring," Jones said.

Jones says Indonesia needs to focus more on intelligence work and preventing the recruitment of new militants through education and community involvement.  

Since the 2002 bombings on Bali, in which more than 200 people died, the Indonesian government has arrested and tried scores of suspected terrorists, most of them affiliated with Jemaah Islamiyah.  It has worked closely with the United States, Australia and its Southeast Asian neighbors to contain militant Islamists who wanted to use violence to establish a single Muslim nation across much of the region.

You May Like

Video On The Scene: In Gaza, Darkness Brings Dread and Death

Palestinians fear nighttime bombardment, VOA correspondent finds More

African Small Farmers Could Be Key to Ending Food Insecurity

Experts say providing access to microloans, crop insurance, better storage facilities, irrigation, road systems and market information could enable greater production More

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid