03 February 2016
On 14 January 2016, four Indonesian militants mounted a brazen lunchtime assault on a Starbucks Café and a police post in downtown Jakarta. The general area boasts government offices, shopping malls and eateries as well as a United Nations office and the United States embassy.
The attackers were killed by the security forces. Three civilians also died in the fire fight. Another 20 were injured including four foreigners from the Netherlands, Algeria, Austria and Germany.
The modus operandi of the Jakarta militants appeared reminiscent of the devastating Paris assault by Islamic State (IS) directed mobile squads in November 2015 in which 130 people were killed. It eventually emerged that the assault was apparently directed by Muhammad Bahrun Naim, an Indonesian extremist blogger and activist with ties to local terrorist networks. Naim is also allegedly a leading figure within the Syria-based Katibah Nusantara unit, comprising largely Indonesian and Malaysian fighters, and part of the so-called Islamic State.
… Kumar Ramakrishna is Associate Professor and Head of Policy Studies in the Office of the Executive Deputy Chairman, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
GPO / RSIS / Online
Last updated on 03/02/2016