ICPVTR Webinar Series on Bali Bombings’ 20th Anniversary by Irjen. Pol. Martinus Hukom, Head, Detachment 88, Dr Rommel Banlaoi, Chairman, Philippines Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research and Mr Thomas Koruth Samuel, Researcher, Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism
Getting the Balance Right: "Hard" and "Soft" Approaches to Counter-Terrorism
About the Series
On 12 October 2002, the Bali bombings rocked Southeast Asia, taking 202 lives in what is considered the deadliest attack in the region. The attacks elevated the threat of Islamist terrorism and played a major role in shaping counter-terrorism (CT) efforts in the region. Twenty years later, two transnational groups, Al-Qaeda and Islamic State, continue to define the terrorist threat in Southeast Asia, whilst at the same time, local militant groups demonstrate a tenacious ability to adapt amidst a changing operational environment. In light of the 20th anniversary of the 2002 Bali Bombings, ICPVTR will be running a 3-part series of webinars to assess the changes, continuities and trajectories of the terror threat in Southeast Asia.
The opening webinar lays the foundation for the series by delving into the core of the region’s terrorism landscape. The second webinar explores radicalisation drivers and considers the roles that ideology, gender and the online space play in terrorist recruitment. The third and final webinar analyses the complexities in balancing ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ approaches in CT policies in Southeast Asia and assesses how these approaches can mitigate emerging terror threats.
This final session will explore the evolution of counter-terrorism (CT) policies in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. The speakers will survey CT practices and policies , distil the impact of the Bali Bombings on CT efforts and reflect on what mix of policies proved crucial in tamping down Jemaah Islamiyah and affiliated groups in the region.
The session will further explore CT policies developed in the wake of the Bombings including those implemented against the threat posed by the rise and spread of pro-Islamic State groups. The speakers will consider the pros and cons of the ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ approaches in CT and how to strike an effective balance between the two approaches when drafting CT policies.
Irjen. Pol. Martinus Hukom as Kadensus, heads the Indonesian counterterrorism force Detachment 88 at Polri (or D88), since May 1, 2020. A graduate of the Indonesian Police Academy in 1991, he was previously the Head of the Anti-Terror Bombing of Polda Metro Jaya (2001-2002), Head of Intelligence Analyst, D88 (2002-2015), Head of Intelligence, D88 (2010-2015), Wakadensus 88 (Dy Head, D88) (2015-2016), Director of Law Enforcement and Deputy for Enforcement and Capacity Building at BNPT RI (2017-2018), and Wakadensus 88 (2018-2020).
He has received multiple police awards which include the Bintang Bhayangkara Nararya, Achievement for revealing the Bali Bombing I (2000), Extraordinary promotion from Kompol to AKBP for the arrest of Dr. Azahari Bin Husin (2005), Extraordinary promotion from AKBP to Kombes for the arrest of Noordin Mohammad Top (2010), and the De’Merito Medal from the President of Timor Leste for revealing the plot to assassinate the President of Timor Leste (2011).
Dr Rommel C. Banlaoi is the Chairman of the Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research (PIPVTR) while serving as the President of the Philippine Society for Intelligence and Security Studies (PSISS) and Convenor of the Network for the Prevention of Violent Extremism in the Philippines (NPVEP). He served as Chairman of the Council for Asian Terrorism Research (CATR) and an Adjunct Fellow of the Center for Global Counterterrorism Cooperation (CGCC). He is the author of several books, journal articles and book chapters on terrorism issues in the Philippines, particularly on the Abu Sayyaf Group.
Dr Banlaoi has 30 years of continuous academic experience. He is currently a Professorial Lecturer at the Department of International Studies, Miriam College, and the Philippines. He was a Professor of Political Science and International Relations at the National Defense College of the Philippines (NDCP), where he also served as Vice President. He was also an Assistant Professor of International Studies at De La Salle University (DLSU), Instructor in Political Science at the University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB), and a University Research Associate at the University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD) where he finished his BA and MA in Political Science and took his PhD in Political Science (ABD). He obtained his PhD in International Relations at Jinan University, Guangzhou, China.
Mr Thomas Koruth Samuel is a consultant with the United Nations focusing on Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE). His chief areas of interest lie in the Southeast Asia region. Prior to his UN consulting work, he was the Director of the Digital Strategic Communications Division with the Southeast Asia Regional Centre for Counter-Terrorism (SEARCCT).
Mr Samuel has been appointed by various UN bodies such as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime and the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism to conduct research and intervention programmes on various issues. The latter include national unity, social cohesion and resilience; the role of education in PCVE; bridging the gap between civil society organisations and the authorities in PCVE; pathways to radicalisation; developing Early Warning Early Response mechanisms and radicalisation indicators for PCVE; formulating strategic communications in PCVE; youth radicalisation; and developing National Action Plans in PCVE.
Mr Samuel lectures and writes frequently. In 2014, he was appointed as a Senior Fellow with the International Centre of Excellence for Countering Violent Extremism (Hedayah Centre) in the United Arab Emirates. He was a member of the Commonwealth Countering Violent Extremism Cadre of Experts from 2018 to 2020. In 2021, he was appointed to UNDP’s Global Policy Network (GPN) Roster team in PCVE.
He is currently pursuing his PhD, and his research is focused on the violent radicalisation pathways of Malaysians.