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Posted by On 8:03 PM

Indonesia Issues Death Penalty to Cleric for IS Ties

JAKARTA/WASHINGTON â€"

A court in the capital Jakarta on Friday sentenced an Indonesian Islamist leader to death for inciting terrorist attacks in support of the Islamic State (IS).

The South Jakarta District Court ruled that the cleric, Aman Abdurrahman â€"also known as Oman Rochman â€" masterminded a series of five deadly attacks in the country from prison, including the January 2016 suicide bombing at a Starbucks in Jakarta that killed four civilians and wounded 25 others.

A "Pray for Jakarta" message (top) is displayed on a screen as Indonesians gather outside the damaged Starbucks coffee shop in central Jakarta on Jan. 17, 2016 following the deadly gun and bomb attacks that rocked the city on Jan. 14, 2016.
A "Pray for Jakarta" message (top) is displa yed on a screen as Indonesians gather outside the damaged Starbucks coffee shop in central Jakarta on Jan. 17, 2016 following the deadly gun and bomb attacks that rocked the city on Jan. 14, 2016.

'De facto' leader

Abdurrahman is the leader of Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), which was founded in 2015 and designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. last year for its connections to IS. He was imprisoned in 2004 for bomb-making and terror activities, and again in 2011 for helping set up a jihadi training camp in Aceh province.

According to the U.S. Treasury Department, Abdurrahman pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in early 2014 and served as the group's main translator, disseminating information online from jail, including IS's call for Muslims to kill Westerners indiscriminately. He acted as "de facto" leader of IS supporters in Indonesia and instructed associates to travel to S yria to join the IS jihadists.

A VOA reporter who was present at the court ruling Friday said when presiding Judge Akhmad Jaini started reading out the sentence, Abdurrahman, who has plead not guilty, immediately stood up and then lay prostrate on the courtroom floor. She said hundreds of security forces members could be seen guarding the courthouse during the reading of the verdict.

The court has yet to set a date for his planned capital punishment, which is execution by firing squad. His government-appointed lawyer, Asludin Hajrani, told reporters the verdict could be appealed and he will consult with his client to decide whether to exercise that right.

Trial without facts?

The lawyer said the trial presented no facts that confirmed Abdurrahman's direct involvement in terror attacks, including the 2016 Jakarta bombings.

"The only thing that can connect Abdurrahman with the Thamrin bombing [in Jakarta] and the other inc idents is a message he delivered to Abu Gar, who coordinated and funded the bombing. That message was not from Abdurrahman himself, but actually was from the IS spokesman Sheikh Adnani to carry out operations similar to the ones in France. That is all, other comments are of his teachings that they [judges] don't agree with, like not recognizing that the state of Indonesia exists."

The world's largest Muslim-majority nation, Indonesia has witnessed a rise in jihadi extremism over the last several years along with occasional terrorist attacks in different parts of the country.

Bali bombings

In 2002, al-Qaida-linked Jemaah Islamiah conducted a string of bombings in the tourist island of Bali that killed more than 200 people.

More recently, the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and the Maute group in neighboring Philippines, have inspired an estimated 700 Indonesians to travel to Syria to join the fighting. Indonesia n officials are afraid many of these people ultimately could return home after leaving the Syrian battlefield.

Last month, a wave of IS-inspired suicide bombings in Surabaya city by three familiesâ€"including their young childrenâ€"killed at least 26 people. Following the attacks, the Indonesian parliament revised the country's terror laws to introduce much tougher regulations, including the increase of detention periods and the involvement of the military in counterterrorism operations.

Source: Google News Network: Liputan 24 English | Berita 24 English | Warta 24 English | Netizen 24 Indonesia

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Posted by On 8:03 PM

Terror Leader's Death Sentence Highlights Indonesia's Harder Mood

  1. Terror Leader's Death Sentence Highlights Indonesia's Harder Mood Wall Street Journal
  2. Indonesian Muslim leader sentenced to death over 2016 attack Aljazeera.com
  3. Indonesia Sentences ISIS Recruiter to Death New York Times
  4. ISIS cleric is sentenced to death for masterminding the group's first attack in Indonesia - a suicide bombing at a Starbucks Daily Mail
  5. Full coverage
Source: Google News Network: Liputan 24 English | Berita 24 English | Warta 24 English | Netizen 24 Indonesia

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Posted by On 10:35 AM

Indonesian Muslim leader sentenced to death over 2016 attack

Abdurrahman has refused to recognise the authority of the court, part of his desire to have a Shariah law in the country [AP]
Abdurrahman has refused to recognise the authority of the court, part of his desire to have a Shariah law in the country [AP]

An Indonesian Muslim leader was sentenced to death on Friday over his role in a deadly 2016 suicide attack at Jakarta Starbucks cafe carried out by an affiliate of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.

Aman Abdurrahman, who police and prosecutors said is a key ideologue for ISIL, in the world's largest Muslim nation, kneeled and kissed the floor as the panel of five judges announced the sentence.

Several hundred paramilitary and counterterrorism police secured the Jakarta court where the trial took place.

{articleGUID}
Is ISIL expanding in Southeast Asia?

Fears of attacks have been elevated in Indonesia after suicide bombings in the country's second-largest city, Surabaya, last month that were carried out by families including their young children.

The suicide bombings in Surabaya killed 26 people, including 13 attackers. Two families carried out the attacks, using children as young as 7.

Police said the leader of those bombers was part of the network of fighters inspired by Abdurrahman.

During the trial, prosecutors said Abdurrahman's instructions from prison, where he was serving a terrorism-related sentence, resulted in several attacks in Indonesia.

Threat of armed groups

They included the Starbucks attack in the capital that killed four civilians and four fighters, an attack on a bus terminal in Jakarta that killed three police officers and an attack on a church in Kalimantan that killed a two-year-old girl. Several other children suffered serious burns from the Kalimantan attack.

The court said there was no reason for leniency. It gave seven days for defence lawyers to consider lodging an appeal.

Abdurrahman has refused to recognise the authority of the court, part of his rejection of secular government in Indonesia and desire to replace it with Shariah law.

Jakarta bombing attacks ‘linked to ISIL’

According to prosecutors, Abdurrahman founded Jemaah Anshorut Daulah, which pledged allegiance to ISIL and was opposed to Indonesia's secular government.

Reflecting a dire lack of supervision of armed groups in Indonesia's overcrowded prisons, Abdurrahman was able to spread his ideology and communicate with his supporters on the outside through visitors and video calls, they say.

Reporting from Jakarta, Al Jazeera's Step Vaessen said the case was a "wake-up call" for Indonesian authorities.

"Indonesian prisons have been notorious for a long time, not only for drugs trade but also for recruitment of people for these violent groups.

"Mobile phones are widely available, internet is still widely available. This is a call for a lot of people to ask the government to finally overhaul this prison system," she said.

Abdurrahman was sentenced to prison in 2004 after a bomb he made prematurely exploded at a house in West Java, and again in 2011 for his role in helping set up an armed training camp in a mountainous area of Aceh province.

Executions in Indonesia, which has long faced threats from armed groups, are carried out by firing squad.

In 2002, bombings at the re sort island of Bali killed over 200 - mostly foreign tourists. It was Indonesia's worst-ever attack.

SOURCE: News agencies

Source: Google News Network: Liputan 24 English | Berita 24 English | Warta 24 English | Netizen 24 Indonesia

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Posted by On 10:35 AM

Indonesia's growing thirst for local coffee curbs bean exports

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offee consumption in Indonesia, particularly for Sumatra's Arabica beans, has doubled since 2010, making the country among the fastest growing coffee markets in the world.

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Log In Sign UpSource: Google News Network: Liputan 24 English | Berita 24 English | Warta 24 English | Netizen 24 Indonesia