Blasts hit Jakarta bus terminal

Three Indonesian policemen were killed and five other officers were injured after the two suspects allegedly set off what was believed to be a pressure cooker bomb near a bus terminal in Kampung Melayu, in East Jakarta, at about 9pm local time on Wednesday.

Indonesian National Police spokesperson Setyo Wasisto has said that 2 people were killed and 9 wounded in an explosion that occurred near a bus terminal in the Kampung Melayu neighborhood of East Jakarta on Wednesday, May 24, around 9:00 PM local time.

Indonesian authorities have been increasingly concerned in recent years that the influence of the Islamic State and other transnational terror groups is successfully encouraging homegrown attackers.

Indonesia has always been in war against armed groups but in recent years hundreds of terrorists have gone to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Syria and Iraq for fighting.

A gun and suicide attack in the capital Jakarta left four attackers and four civilians dead in January a year ago, and was the first assault claimed by the Islamic State group in Southeast Asia.

In a televised address, President Joko Widodo said he ordered a thorough probe and was "urging all citizens across the nation to stay calm and remain united".

"I convey my deepest condolences to the victims' families. especially to the policemen", he said in a statement.

"The police personnel had been providing security", to people in the area, he added.

A bomb squad was investigating the explosion as heavily armed police and soldiers guarded the area.

Police said an anti-terror squad immediately raided two houses believed to be owned by the perpetrators in neighbouring provinces of Banten and West Java, but the results have not yet been made public.

Premier Hospital spokesman Sukendar said one of those injured required immediate surgery.

National police spokesman Setyo Wasisto expressed his dismay over the attack.

Suspicion is likely to fall on local network Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), which supports ISIL and has been blamed for recent mostly low-impact attacks.

Indonesian police say two people have been killed, including the suspected suicide bomber according to Reuters. Authorities suspect the attacker, killed by police, had links to a radical network sympathetic to Islamic State.

Police said that the bomb packing and the contents were aimed at causing maximum explosion and giving severe impacts to the targets as it can shred flesh of people around the bomb blast.

The explosions came within five minutes of each other at the bus stop and a nearby toilet.

A sustained crackdown weakened the most risky networks but the emergence of ISIL has proved a potent new rallying cry for armed groups.

  • Leroy Wright