Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bali beefs up security, but tourists unfazed

Police on Indonesia's resort island of Bali stepped up security in tourist hotspots yesterday after five suspected terrorists were shot dead in raids, but tourists remain unfazed by the incident.

"We beefed up security in all places around Bali especially in strategic places such entertainment spots, hotels and malls. What's clear, we are on alert," Bali police spokesman Hariadi said.

"We guarantee maximum security for tourists. They should not be alarmed and should continue to enjoy their holiday," he added.

Muslim-majority Indonesia has been rocked by a series of attacks staged by regional terror network Jemaah Islamiyah in recent years, including the 2002 Bali bombings which killed 202 people.

Police said that on Sunday evening they gunned down five people in two separate raids in the Denpasar and Sanur areas in the south of the island, which is popular with tourists for its beaches and lush interior.

Over one hundred members of the elite Detachment 88 counter-terrorism force were seen in Sanur where three suspects were killed at a villa, a correspondent saw.

The men "planned to carry out an act of terrorism and several robberies" and are believed to be part of a group who killed an officer in a spectacular 2010 bank robbery to raise funds for terrorist attacks, police said.

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