More Bombings in Bali

Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 06:08 pm
Indonesia investigates Bali bombings
Indonesian authorities have begun investigating three bomb blasts that ripped through crowded restaurants on the Indonesian resort island of Bali, which killed 25 people including at least one Australian.

The nearly simultaneous blasts came almost exactly three years after militants linked to Al Qaeda bombed two nightclubs in Bali, killing 202 people.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono branded the blasts as acts of terrorism and vowed to catch those responsible.

A spokesman for the Indonesian Foreign Ministry, Marty Natalagawa, said the investigation to find those responsible for the attacks was already under way.

"The focus now, apart from the obvious one of saving lives and treating the injured, is on the gathering of the evidence, the material evidence on the ground at the two bombing sites so the police can quickly ascertain who perpetrated these heinous and cowardly acts," he said.

Dr Yudhoyono said it was too soon to blame anyone for the attacks, which security experts said bore the hallmarks of Jemaah Islamiah, a network seen as the regional arm of Al Qaeda.

"This is clearly a terrorist act ... We will catch the perpetrators and punish them," Dr Yudhoyono told an impromptu news conference in Jakarta, adding he would go to Bali on Sunday.

He noted that in July he had received information of an impending attack, with explosives ready to be detonated, but said that information showed the target would be Jakarta.

Australia, the United States, Britain, and UN secretary-general Kofi Annan have also condemned the attacks.

Attack casualties

Officials at Bali's Sanglah hospital said 25 dead had been brought in.

Reuters reports that 15 bodies have been identified, comprising 12 Indonesians, including one six-year-old boy, two Australians and a Japanese national.

Foreign Minister Alexander Downer confirmed that a 16-year-old Australian boy died.

The wounded included 17 Australians, three seriously, six South Koreans, three Americans, three Japanese and one Briton.

Doctors have expressed concern over one of the most seriously wounded Australians being treated in Sanglah hospital.

Two medical evacuation flights for the Australian victims are expected to arrive from Singapore.

People concerned about friends or relatives in Bali have been advised to contact the Department of Foreign Affairs hotline on 1800 0022 14.

'Terrorist attack'

Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer says he is finding it hard to get detailed information about the dead and injured but that it is safe to assume the Bali blasts were the work of terrorists.

"We think it's almost certainly a terrorist attack, I doubt that there's any other explanation for it, you could assume it's an attack by an organisation like Jemaah Islamiah speaking from experience, but of course at this stage no one's claimed responsibility for the attack and we have no evidence."

A French diplomat who visited two hospitals in Bali said at least 32 people had been confirmed dead and 101 had been injured in the blasts, AFP has reported.

Police confirmed three blasts at separate restaurants packed with evening diners, two at outdoor seafood eateries on Jimbaran Beach and one at a steak bar at Kuta Beach in an area surrounded by shops and jammed with pedestrians.

They have not said how the bombs were delivered or if suicide attackers were responsible.

Tourism nightmare

Australian journalist Sean Mulcahy was in Kuta when one of the bombs went off.

"I've travelled through war zones for my job as a journalist and this is something that you would expect in Afghanistan or Iraq, the emergency rooms at some of the hospitals, the ground is just covered in blood, there's people walking, arms missing, it is just a war zone," he said.

Ketut Suartana, 33, said he was eating at Jimbaran when the first bomb exploded. The second came just minutes later.

"We were eating and suddenly it just went dark. I tried to run but I kept falling over. Then the second blast happened," said Suartana, 33, lying on a hospital bed with scratch marks over his face and chest.

"People were in panic. I just tried to save myself."

Inside the badly damaged Raja restaurant and bar in Kuta Beach, a popular eatery, blood was spattered on the floor. Shattered glass from other shops and cafes littered the street.

Wounded Indonesians sat on the pavement, some weeping, while foreigners fled the scene in panic.

Bystanders gave first aid to many of the wounded.

The sight of bloodied foreigners, which is likely to trigger an exodus of travellers on Sunday, is another nightmare for Bali's tourism industry, the island's lifeblood, which had only recently recovered from the devastating blasts of 2002.

Australian tourist Leigh Birchall says he and his friends are shocked and that the streets of Bali are deserted.

"Everyone is back at their rooms as you can see there is no one around and its really shaken up the whole town and what it's going to do to all these people, they don't have much money already and tourism is their main income so they are no going to have any money," he said.



Also: http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/10/01/asia/web.1001bali.php
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 06:29 pm
Gee, how devastating.

I am trying to find a topic here on a2k not all so long ago, perhaps within the last six months, in which a fellow described a similar shop and restaurant area, how he had gone there and stayed with his family at a certain hotel. It rings a bell to me that it was the same location, though I may be mis-remembering.
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 06:32 pm
Not a big place, methinks.

And the tourist meccas are pretty well known
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 06:48 pm
Are you thinking of the Egyptian incident, osso?
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 06:56 pm
No. This was just a young guy telling about his wonderful trip, and describing what he saw in the shops and what kind of foods were there - a charming small thread. I just looked through the asia threads, and a few pages of travel and culture threads, having already gotten nowhere - I remember so little re the words - with search.

Oh, well. It doesn't matter, it may be some other place entirely, just that that little thread made me feel like I knew the place a bit - a sort of connection in this tough world.
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 07:13 pm
Ahh, I see what you're saying. Forgive the intrusion.
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Reply Sat 1 Oct, 2005 07:14 pm
Intrusion, never.
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Reply Mon 3 Oct, 2005 03:25 am
Macabre Clues Advance Inquiry in Bali Attacks

Published: October 3, 2005
KUTA, Indonesia, Monday, Oct. 3 - In the first 24 hours after a series of bombs killed 22 people in a restaurant on a busy street and in two beachfront restaurants five miles away, investigators in Bali made rapid progress on Sunday, in part owing to a macabre bit of luck. As they sifted through bodies and body parts, they say, they found the heads of three men and three sets of legs, with no middles, the forensic signature of suicide bombings. One head was more than 75 feet from the rest of the body.

A Recent History of Major Explosions in Indonesia (October 2, 2005) The blasts on Saturday evening did not obliterate the faces, so the police were able to display vivid, gruesome photographs of them at a news conference here on Sunday evening, and the photographs were shown on television and in Monday newspapers. The likelihood of identifications from the public seemed high.

The Bali police chief, Made Pastika, revised the death toll downward from an estimate of 25, saying that the three bombers had killed themselves and 19 other people - 14 Indonesians and 5 foreigners. Of the more than 90 wounded, nearly all were Indonesian, he said.

At least seven of the wounded were Americans, all from one San Francisco family eating in Raja's, a restaurant in Kuta, when a bomb went off there. The seven were expected to be released from a hospital here later Monday.

Mr. Pastika said that the police were searching for three other men believed to be involved in the bombings, and that a faction of the militant group Jemaah Islamiyah might be responsible.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono warned that terrorists could be planning more strikes, and police commanders in Jakarta, the capital, ordered two-thirds of their forces to remain on standby. "The terrorists are still looking for soft targets," the president said Sunday after touring the bombing scenes in Bali.

Mr. Pastika presented a video, taken by a visiting family, that showed a man with a backpack walking into Raja's and then the giant flash of an explosion. Each of the three bombs, he said, held as much as 22 pounds of dynamite, and they might have been carried in backpacks or in suicide vests. It was not known if they were detonated remotely or by triggers set off by the suicide bombers.

Mr. Pastika said the investigators had not concluded who was responsible, but he noted the similarity to two bombings seconds apart at nightclubs here in October 2002 that killed 202 people. Those attacks were the work of Jemaah Islamiyah, Indonesian and American officials have said. The group is considered the Southeast Asia surrogate for Al Qaeda. But Mr. Pastika said there was no evidence of Qaeda involvement in the bombings on Saturday.

In the past few years, the Indonesian police have arrested scores of Jemaah Islamiyah's most militant members, and the arrests severely weakened the group, according to Sidney Jones, the pre-eminent expert on the group and, more broadly, terrorism in Southeast Asia.

While the group's mainstream members have forsaken terrorism, she said, a breakaway faction remains committed to terrorist acts against the West, and the United States in particular.

That faction is headed by Azhari Husin, a Malaysian educated in Britain, and Muhammad Noordin Top, also a Malaysian, who is thought to have been the mastermind behind the deadly attack on the JW Marriott Hotel in Jakarta in August 2003, she said. The two men, who have become the most-wanted fugitives in Southeast Asia, are also believed to have been behind an attack on the Australian Embassy in September 2004.

Mr. Pastika said they were possibly behind the attacks on Saturday.............

NYT article continues

Balinese bear the brunt, as usual, both in deaths and injuriies, and on their fragile economy, which is utterly dependent on tourism.

2 Australians dead, 2 more believed dead.

People being evacuated to hospitals in Singapore and Australia again.

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Reply Mon 3 Oct, 2005 08:24 am
Thanks for the report, dlowan.
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Reply Mon 3 Oct, 2005 08:54 am
I agree, Deb. <Deep sigh>
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Reply Mon 3 Oct, 2005 09:18 am
Dummy finally realizes she had been speaking of Brahmin's Indian Diary thread and his description of Puri. Puri, Bali, boy was I misremembering.
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Reply Wed 5 Oct, 2005 08:25 pm
well apparantly all that remains of the 3 bombers are their heads and
This time they used ball bearings in the bombs, so its made a hell of a mess to innocent victims and other bystanders. Sad
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Reply Wed 5 Oct, 2005 08:33 pm
That'll be terror for you.

Like the jumping mines we invented, full of ****, and they leap up in the air, to get people's faces and bellies, instead of just blow their legs off.

"What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form and moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension, how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals!"
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Reply Wed 5 Oct, 2005 08:49 pm
What a piece of work is man indeed.
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Reply Wed 16 Nov, 2005 11:05 pm
The bombings are probably by Provincial Aceh Muslims who feel they are shortchanged as the benefits of their province'soil are accruing to the island of Java where the majority of the Indonesian population is and also the seat of the government. It is like Texans if the federal government took all of Texas oil and just left Texans to their own devices.
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Reply Wed 16 Nov, 2005 11:27 pm
Now there's a thought...
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