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March 19, 2012

BHA Press Release - Bali Terrorism Raid


BHA Press Release - Bali Terrorism Raid
Denpasar, Bali, March 19—2012
 Following a successful raid on a terrorist hideout and the elimination of wanted terror suspects in Denpasar and Sanur, Bali, the Bali Hotels Association (BHA) is issuing the following statement.
“We would like to commend the authorities in Bali for their successful operation following surveillance and counter-terrorism intelligence,” said Jean-Charles Le Coz, BHA chairman.
“The Indonesian authorities, and especially those on Bali, are to be recognized for acting quickly and swiftly in this matter; in the meantime, it's very much business as usual on the island."
On the evening of March 18, five allegedly armed terror suspects were confronted by the elite Detachment 88 counter-terrorism squad in Denpasar and Sanur. Authorities remain confident that already-stringent security measures are paying off, while the raid shows that efforts to contain any threat to the island’s peaceful way of life are working.
“While we always advise everyone in Bali—whether locals or holidaymakers—to be vigilant for anything suspicious, we also have to thank the law-enforcement and terrorism officials for protecting our island from those who seeks to disrupt and destroy,” said BHA’s Le Coz.
Security precautions are active in all areas, but especially in strategic places such entertainment spots, hotels and malls, said a police spokesperson. As such, BHA can confidently report that the incident will have no effect on business, said Le Coz.
“The raid shows that Bali is prepared, and we have full confidence in our collective ability to prevail against threats. As always, we advise common sense, and our members work closely with police at all times to ensure the safety of guests staying in Bali. Security has always been a primary concern, and will remain so,” he said.

Bali Hotels Association (BHA) is a group of star-rated hotels and resorts. Members include the management of more than a hundred of the island’s best hotels and resorts, representing more than 15,000 hotel rooms and 30,000 employees. The association runs sustainable tourism, education and environmental projects, and helps set tourism security and safety standards, following a multi-stakeholder approach that supports public-private partnerships in corporate social responsibility. The association also provides a professional information and discussion forum, enabling it to speak with a common voice on issues relevant to the tourism and hospitality industry in Bali.
For more information and updates about Bali Hotels Association (BHA), visit www.balihotelsassociation.com

Bali safe, but vigilance crucial: Governor

Ni Komang Erviani and Rabby Pramudatama, The Jakarta Post, Denpasar/Jakarta | Wed, 03/21/2012 8:23 AM
Following the recent killing of five suspected terrorists in police raids in Bali, the province’s governor, Made Mangku Pastika, reminded the public to remain cautious of the looming threat of terrorism.

“The terrorist threat is real. I have many times stated that there are real threats targeting Bali. But despite that, the province’s safety remains paramount,” Pastika said on Tuesday.

Pastika said that as a top international tourist destination, Bali would always be a strategic target for global terrorism. A small incident in Bali would be sufficient to give terrorists global exposure, he said.

“Even a small firecracker exploding in Bali would be reported all over the world, let alone a bomb,” said Pastika, a retired police general who rose to prominence after leading an international task force that succeeded in apprehending al-Qaeda-linked terrorists responsible for the infamous 2002 Bali bombing.

“Terrorists have always wanted to convey a strong message to remind the world that they still exist. So we must never underestimate them,” said Pastika, who served as Bali Police chief when terrorists conducted a second bomb attack in 2005 in the predominantly Hindu province.

Pastika said that the National Police had always informed him when they received intelligence reports on new terrorist threats targeting the resort island. “When there’s been an indication of an impending terrorist attack, the police have always informed me about any preventive measures,” he said.

The police’s Detachment 88 antiterror squad shot dead five suspected terrorists at two separate locations in Bali on Sunday. According to the police, the suspects may have had links to terrorist group Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid (JAT), founded by terrorist convict Abu Bakar Ba’asyir.

Indonesia, with the world’s largest Muslim-majority population, has seen five major terrorist attacks in the past eight years, including the first Bali bombing in 2002, which killed more than 200 people, most of them foreign tourists.

The country has not seen a major terrorist attack since the bombing of the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta in 2009 that killed seven people, mostly foreigners.

Since the 2002 Bali bombing, the law enforcement agencies have conducted largely successful counterterrorism operations, in which more than 600 terrorists have been put behind bars. Most of the country’s notorious terrorist masterminds have also either been killed in police raids or convicted in the courts.

However, a recent string of terrorist plots foiled by the police have served as a stark reminder that the fight against terrorism is far from over.

Separately, the National Police insisted on Tuesday that no human rights violations were committed during Sunday’s raids. “There’s no evidence of wrongdoings in the raids. We can be held accountable for our actions.” spokesman Insp. Gen. Saud Usman Nasution, a former Detachment 88 commander, said.

The police’s standard operating procedure stipulates that officers can shoot suspects in order to immobilize them or if they pose a risk to the safety of the officers, according to Saud. “The suspects possessed firearms, which could harm police officers as well as civilians. Moreover, the raid took place at night when visuals were low.”Following the recent killing of five suspected terrorists in police raids in Bali, the province’s governor, Made Mangku Pastika, reminded the public to remain cautious of the looming threat of terrorism.

“The terrorist threat is real. I have many times stated that there are real threats targeting Bali. But despite that, the province’s safety remains paramount,” Pastika said on Tuesday.

Pastika said that as a top international tourist destination, Bali would always be a strategic target for global terrorism. A small incident in Bali would be sufficient to give terrorists global exposure, he said.

“Even a small firecracker exploding in Bali would be reported all over the world, let alone a bomb,” said Pastika, a retired police general who rose to prominence after leading an international task force that succeeded in apprehending al-Qaeda-linked terrorists responsible for the infamous 2002 Bali bombing.

“Terrorists have always wanted to convey a strong message to remind the world that they still exist. So we must never underestimate them,” said Pastika, who served as Bali Police chief when terrorists conducted a second bomb attack in 2005 in the predominantly Hindu province.

Pastika said that the National Police had always informed him when they received intelligence reports on new terrorist threats targeting the resort island. “When there’s been an indication of an impending terrorist attack, the police have always informed me about any preventive measures,” he said.

The police’s Detachment 88 antiterror squad shot dead five suspected terrorists at two separate locations in Bali on Sunday. According to the police, the suspects may have had links to terrorist group Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid (JAT), founded by terrorist convict Abu Bakar Ba’asyir.

Indonesia, with the world’s largest Muslim-majority population, has seen five major terrorist attacks in the past eight years, including the first Bali bombing in 2002, which killed more than 200 people, most of them foreign tourists.

The country has not seen a major terrorist attack since the bombing of the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta in 2009 that killed seven people, mostly foreigners.

Since the 2002 Bali bombing, the law enforcement agencies have conducted largely successful counterterrorism operations, in which more than 600 terrorists have been put behind bars. Most of the country’s notorious terrorist masterminds have also either been killed in police raids or convicted in the courts.

However, a recent string of terrorist plots foiled by the police have served as a stark reminder that the fight against terrorism is far from over.

Separately, the National Police insisted on Tuesday that no human rights violations were committed during Sunday’s raids. “There’s no evidence of wrongdoings in the raids. We can be held accountable for our actions.” spokesman Insp. Gen. Saud Usman Nasution, a former Detachment 88 commander, said.

The police’s standard operating procedure stipulates that officers can shoot suspects in order to immobilize them or if they pose a risk to the safety of the officers, according to Saud. “The suspects possessed firearms, which could harm police officers as well as civilians. Moreover, the raid took place at night when visuals were low.”

 THREE of the five men killed in a police raid in Bali, including one of Indonesia's most wanted, were apparently awaiting the arrival of prostitutes as counter-terrorism officers swooped. A staff member at the Lhaksmi Hotel in the Sanur, one of the popular tourist area's less than classy establishments, has revealed that the men were actually waiting for the arrival of some lady friends when police stormed the address.
"They had ordered two prostitutes and they were waiting in a small gazebo," Made Tama, who works at Lhaksmi Hotel told AAP on Monday.
"The two girls actually had arrived, but when they're were about to go inside (Detachment 88) officers would not let them. I was forbidden too."
Made, who had greeted the girls on their arrival at the hotel, also revealed it was not the first night of action the three men had seen recently.

"They actually ordered for another girl and they had ordered them previously.
"But one of the girls, Gita, who is very beautiful - she didn't show up."
Sources told The Australian that at least one of the five men killed overnight in Bali was involved in a 2010 bank raid to finance terrorist activities, according to police sources.
The suspects were killed during raids on hotel rooms in Sanur and Denpasar about 10pm local time by more than 100 officers of Indonesia's crack anti-terror unit Densus 88 officers.
Police sources said one was a "major terrorism suspect" with connections to the CIMB Niaga bank robbery in Medan, North Sumatra in August 2010, which in turn was linked with the so-called al Qa'ida in Aceh militant training camp broken up eight months earlier.
A Bali police source said today the suspect was “HN”, one of two men killed in the second raid in Denpasar.
He was 32 years old, from Bandung West Java, and was among those wanted for the Medan raid in which a policemen was killed.
"Five people who planned to carry out an act of terrorism and several robberies have been gunned down Sunday evening," said national police spokesman Boy Rafli Amar.
"All of them died in shoot-outs. They opened fire at the police while trying to escape."
Three men were killed in the Densus 88 attack on a cheap hotel bungalow in Sanur and the others died in a hotel room in downtown Denpasar, about 15km away.
Members of the group had been seen at a Kuta currency shop, run by PT Bali Money Changer, and a gold shop in Uluwatu. Police believe the establishments were targetted for robbery.
A Bali police spokesman said the five were associated and that arms and ammunition had been recovered from at least one of the locations.
Several of the suspects came to Bali in February and are understood to have been under surveillance since.
Bali Police will provide further details later today.
Witnesses reported seeing police removing bodies from a bungalow at the hotel, which remained surrounded by heavily armed officers late on Sunday night.
Police confirmed the raids were linked, adding that those killed had either resisted arrest or tried to escape.
"On Danau Poso three people were killed from police fire and on Gunung Soputan two were shot dead," Bali Police spokesman Hariadi said.
"They are linked to terrorism."
A number of firearms and ammunition were recovered from both addresses but Mr Hariadi refused to confirm if any explosives were discovered at either of the locations.
Mr Hariadi added that it was believed the group had been planning robberies, to be used to fund terror attacks, but did not provide further details.
However, another senior police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said it was possible the group was planning to carry out attacks on Thursday, on the eve of Nyepi, or the annual Day of Silence, which marks the Balinese Hindu New Year.
Balinese traditionally hold large parades on the eve of Nyepi, which also draw large numbers of tourists.
The latest development is a stark reminder of the lingering threat of terrorism in Indonesia and comes ahead of the 10th anniversary later this year of the 2002 Bali bombings which killed 202 people, including 88 Australians.
 Additional reporting: AAP

A BAR on the tourist strip of Seminyak in Bali that is popular with Australians was one of the targets of a terror cell that has been destroyed by Indonesian police. Crack officers from Detachment 88 killed five suspected terrorists and foiled a plot to attack tourists in Bali during local new year celebrations this week.
More than 5000 Australians are currently holidaying in Bali and one of the targets named by Indonesian authorities was a late night bar called La Vida Loca that is frequented late at night by young Australians.
According to tourist websites the crowds don't get to the bar until after 2am when it "packs them in for vodka drinks, with a great live band nightly, playing mostly Latino grooves".
"Bring your sunglasses as well as your salsa moves as most La Vida Loca's party till sunrise,'' it says.
Police sources said attacks were planned for Thursday night, which is the eve of the annual Nyepi or day of silence to mark the Balinese Hindu new year.
One of the five suspected terrorists was on a police wanted list for the past two years and took part in a terrorism linked robbery last year.
The 32-year-old, known as Hn, had also taken part in the armed robbery of a bank in Medan, Sumatra.
He was one of three men gunned down in Denpasar during a battle with the anti-terrorist unit Detachment 88.
Another two suspects were killed by police in the tourist spot of Sanur, close to a pub called the Cat and Fiddle.
Police confirmed the raids were linked, adding that those killed had either resisted arrest or tried to escape.
"On Danau Poso three people were killed from police fire and on Gunung Soputan two were shot dead," Bali Police spokesman Hariadi said.
"They are linked to terrorism."
A number of firearms and ammunition were recovered from both addresses but Hariadi refused to confirm if any explosives were discovered at either of the locations.
Hariadi added that it was believed the group had been planning robberies, to be used to fund terror attacks, but did not provide further details.
However, another senior police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said it was possible the group was planning to carry out attacks on Thursday.
The Balinese traditionally hold large parades on the eve of Nyepi, which also draw large numbers of tourists.
The latest development is a stark reminder of the lingering threat of terrorism in Indonesia and comes ahead of the 10th anniversary later this year of the 2002 Bali bombings which killed 202 people, including 88 Australians.
The Jakarta Globe newspaper reported that a police source said that a high-profile terrorism suspect was among the groups raided overnight but would not confirm whether he was one of the five people killed.
It's understood police were also investigating whether members of the groups raided on Sunday were linked to a terrorist network discovered training at a paramilitary camp in Aceh in 2010.
The Aceh camp was set up by Abu Bakar Bashir, the former spiritual leader of Jemaah Islamiyah and the group blamed for the 2002 bombings in Bali.
While Bashir is serving 15 years in relation to his involvement in the Aceh network, a number of members are known to be still at large.

Source :http://www.news.com.au/

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