TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry can yet to confirm the news on the involvement of two Indonesians in the bomb attack at a church in Jolo, South Philippines.
The ministry’s spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir said that Minister Retno Marsudi, as well as the Indonesian Embassy in Manila and Davao City, is still trying to contact several parties in the Philippines to obtain a confirmation.
“Based on the latest information we received from the Philippines National Police (PNP) and Western Mindanao military command (Westmincom), the identity or nationality of Jolo bombers have yet to be identified,” Arrmanatha said in a written statement, Friday, February 1, 2019.
Previously, Philippine interior minister Eduardo Año said that the deadly church bombing was a suicide attack carried out by an Indonesian couple, with help of an Islamic State-linked group.
Año said the Indonesians were assisted by Abu Sayyaf bandits. The militant guided them, studied the target, did reconnaissance and surveillance work, and brought the couple inside the cathedral, he explained, as quoted by newsinfo.inquirer.net on February 2.
He added that the male Indonesian was known as “Abu Huda,” among several aliases, and had been in Sulu for a long time. Several witnesses pointed to the man’s female companion as the one who placed the bomb inside the church.
The bomb attack at the Philippines’ Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel occurred on Sunday, January 27. As many as 22 were killed and 123 people were injured in the attack.