Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Jolo Church Bombing: Police Struggle to Identify Bombers

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Markus Wisnu Murti

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  • A Philippine Army member inspects the damage inside a church after a bombing attack in Jolo, Sulu province, Philippines January 27, 2019.  The Philippines vowed to destroy those behind twin bombings that killed 20 people during a Sunday church service. Armed Forces Of The Philippines - Western Mindanao Command/Handout via REUTERS

    A Philippine Army member inspects the damage inside a church after a bombing attack in Jolo, Sulu province, Philippines January 27, 2019. The Philippines vowed to destroy those behind twin bombings that killed 20 people during a Sunday church service. Armed Forces Of The Philippines - Western Mindanao Command/Handout via REUTERS

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Indonesian National Police (Polri) have admitted to facing difficulties in identifying two suicide bombers—allegedly Indonesian nationals—who attacked a Roman Catholic cathedral on Jolo Island, southern Philippines.

    “Because the bomb was high-explosive, so [the police] should identify DNA from the fragments,” said National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Dedy Prasetyo at the National Police headquarters in South Jakarta, Monday, February 11, 2019.

    Dedi said the police must still go through a lengthy process after identifying the DNA, including finding relatives of the DNA owners to match their identities. 

    Read: Indonesia to Send Officers to Identify Bombers in Philippines

    “It will only be announced once there is a match,” said Dedi.

    The identification process involves the police’s anti-terror unit Densus 88, the National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) and the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

    The police’s move was in response to the recent statement by Philippine Home Affairs Minister that the suicide bombers were Indonesian nationals under the auspices of terrorist group Abu Sayyaf. The twin bombings killed 22 people and injured 100 others.

    ANDITA RAHMA