01/16/2016, 20.07
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Eleven websites shut down as police battles extremists

by Mathias Hariyadi

Indonesian Special forces go after militants linked to the Islamic state. The authorities identify a number of radical websites hosted in Indonesia and abroad. Four of the five Jakarta bombers were identified yesterday.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) –  Indonesia’s Communications Ministry shut down 11 radical Islamist websites that targeted young people in the wake of anti-terror measures taken by President Joko Widodo following Thursday’s deadly terrorist attacks in central Jakarta that left seven people dead.

The main suspect in the attacks, Bahrun Naim, has long used the web to recruit young Indonesians for attacks like those in Paris on 13 November 2015.

President Widodo, who described the Thamrin bombings as acts of “terror", issued orders to Special Forces to hunt down the suspects and affiliated radical groups.

In the past few days, police carried a series of raids in several cities against targets already under surveillance. In Poso, Central Sulawesi, police exchanged fire with members of Mujahidin Indonesia Timur (MIT), a local terrorist group led by Santoso, Indonesia’s most wanted man.

Yesterday, police identified four of the five terrorists killed in the Jakarta attacks. One of them, Afif Sunakim, spent seven years in prison for attending an Islamist training camp.

Also yesterday, the authorities detained three men in connection with the attacks. Their role has yet to be determine.

Indonesia’s Communications Minister Adi Rudiantara said that some of the 11 blocked sites are hosted abroad; some in Indonesia. “We decided to block them first, and analyse their content later."

This is not the first time that the Indonesian government blocks radical websites. In March 2015, Indonesian security identified 22 websites that spread Islamic State propaganda.

In the last two days, a flood of postings has hit social media in Indonesia, with people saying that despite terrorism they are not afraid.

Activists and civil society groups also took to the street to reiterate that terrorists will not win (pictured).

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