Bomb rocks market in Ambon, 1 dead and 12 wounded

Ambon (AsiaNews) – A fish vendor ending up losing his life and 12 others were badly wounded after a bomb exploded today at a crowded marketplace on Ahmad Yani Street in Ambon. Meanwhile a bomb squad managed to defuse a second bomb in another part of the city.

According to sources at the Ambon Diocesan Crisis Center, the bomb that exploded was placed in an empty cookie tin found in a bag hung from a motorbike.   

The motorbike's owner, alerted police as soon as he saw the bag. Police officers, once they arrived, placed the bomb in the middle of the street and moved people away from the area, while waiting for units from the bomb squad to show up.

Twenty-five minutes later, however, the explosive device went off spontaneously before the experts arrived. The early explosion was blamed on the intense heat while killing 45-year old Willem Patipeiluhu, who died a few hours later in the hospital. The 12 others who were also wounded are still being treated for serious conditions. 

More or less at the same time, another bomb was found in front of the Protestant Synod building next to Maranatha Church. The police, who defused the bomb, found the device hidden in a flowerpot.

Several other anonymous reports of hidden bombs have received lately, yet most have turned out to be false alarms.