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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 03/10/2009
INDONESIA
Guantanamo detainee Hambali is the mastermind of the Bali massacre and the attack against Christians
by Mathias Hariyadi
He is being accused by two former militants of Jemaah Islamiah, sentenced to life in prison for their involvement in attacks on churches in 2000. The country is facing the problem of where he should be sent: his return home would strengthen the fundamentalist wing of the country, which considers him a "hero" because of his years in Guantanamo.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Riduan “Hambali” Isamudin is the mastermind who planned the massacre in Bali in 2002, and the attacks against Christian churches and buildings in 2000. The accusation comes from Mubarok and Ali Imron, both members of Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), who say they are willing to testify against the operational chief of the Islamic fundamentalist movement in southeast Asia, who is being held in the detention center in Guantanamo.

Mubarok and Ali Imron are being held in the prison in Jakarta, where they are serving a life sentence for their involvement in the attack against churches in the country. In 2000, a coordinated series of bombs exploded in six different provinces, killing 19 people in the period before Christmas. They avoided the death penalty by demonstrating "remorse," and cooperating with security forces to shed light on the attacks. "Hambali brainwashed our mind to stage a jihad war against non-Islam followers," Imron says.

The accusations issued by the two former jihadists and the possible closing of the Guantanamo detention center raise a serious problem for Indonesian authorities: should Hambali return to the country, or is it preferable for him to remain in a foreign nation? It is not an insignificant question: on the one hand, his return would provide investigators with the possibility of interrogating him; he could also clarify his relationship with the religious fundamentalist Abu Bakar Baasyir, head of JI in southeast Asia. On the other hand, it could create a substantial security problem: the fact that he spent many years in the Cuban prison could elevate him to the status of "martyr" in the fight against the West. "“If Hambali returns back to Indonesia, he’s certainly becoming a hero," says a police official. "He served in Guantanamo. He’ll be a rock star. That’s why, it’s preferable for us that he is kept in the United States."

Sidney Jones, an expert on terrorism, says that "if you think Abu Bakar Baasyir was treated as a celebrity, the score for Hambali is 10 times (due to his record as Guantanamo veteran)." Chief of police Bambang Hendarso Danuri says that United States authorities should keep Hambali out of Indonesia for obvious reasons of security. He says the interrogations can be conducted abroad, and there is no need for the work to be done in Indonesia.

Anonymous police sources say that last February, a group of experts in Indonesia's anti-terrorism department met with Hambali in Guantanamo. The terrorist, who was in good health, is said to have confessed his involvement in the bombing attacks on the churches. So far, the Indonesian foreign minister and the U.S. embassy in Jakarta have not wanted to release any statements regarding an "agreement" on who should keep the terrorist.

Although there has been no official statement, it seems evident that the Indonesian authorities prefer to leave the hot potato in other hands. At the moment, there is not sufficient proof to incriminate Hambali in the Bali massacre, and the confession of the two terrorists does not seem to be enough. Moreover, the antiterrorism law of 2002 is not retroactive, and cannot be used in procedures against him. Hambali would therefore need to answer "only" for the attack on the churches in 2000.


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See also
03/12/2009 INDONESIA
"Martyrs' Trilogy," memoirs of Bali attackers exalted as heroes
by Mathias Hariyadi
11/06/2008 INDONESIA
Execution of Bali bombers tomorrow. Island on high alert
by Mathias Hariyadi
11/27/2008 INDIA
India, long a target of terror (overview)
10/21/2008 INDONESIA
Last appeal rejected for three condemned in Bali bombing
by Mathias Hariyadi
07/04/2008 INDONESIA
Sumatra: Western tourists in sights of Islamic terrorists
by Mathias Hariyadi

Editor's choices
ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST
Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community
by Bernardo CervelleraThe influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
TUNISIA - ISLAM
Tunis, stop terrorism by closing fundamentalist mosquesPresident Essebsi believes unified and global strategy needed to counter terrorism. The attack in Sousse almost simultaneous with those in France, Kuwait, Somalia. Islamic State claims responsibility.
VATICAN – ITALY
Pope in Turin tells young people to be chaste in love, go against the flow and not retire at 20In his last meeting on the first day of his visit to Turin, Francis met young people in Vittorio Square. In a Question and Answer exchange, he talked about love, friendship and loss of trust towards life. "I understand you. How many hypocrites speak of peace and sell weapons. How can one trust? By following Christ, whose act of extreme love, i.e. the Cross, saved humanity." The pontiff also looked at the horrors of the 20th century as evidence of the loss of trust towards world powers. He urged young people “not to retire at 20,” but “live, don’t just exist.”

Dossier

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