Denpasar. Indonesia’s counterterrorism body said on Friday that many countries consider Indonesia a model for counterterrorism activities, citing the country’s success in arresting hundreds of terror suspects and unraveling their networks.
National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) chief Ansyaad Mbai said the international public started to recognize Indonesia’s counterterrorism capacity since it managed to bring to justice the perpetrators of the 2002 Bali bombings, which killed 202 people, mostly Australians.
The infamous Bali bomber trio — Imam Samudera, Amrozi and Mukhlas — were sentenced to death by firing squad in 2008 for their roles in the bombings, while the last prominent member of their network, Umar Patek, was sentenced to 20 years in jail just a few months ago.
“Many countries deem Indonesia as successful in tackling terrorism and preventing terrorists from commiting crimes,” Ansyaad said during the launch of the Bali branch of the Terrorism Prevention Coordination Forum (FKPT) in Denpasar on Friday.
“This achievement is expected to be accompanied by growing alert among all parties so that we can maintain and continually improve national stability,” he added.
Meanwhile, Comr. Kurniawa Wijaya, an official with the National Police’s anti-terror unit Densus 88, said police have arrested about 800 terrorists since 2002.
He said most of them have undergone legal proceedings, although some were shot dead during police terror raids.
FKPT Bali, headed by I Gede Putu Jaya Suartama, was formed just a week after the 10th anniversary of the 2002 Bali bombings in Jimbaran, Bali.
It is aimed at maximizing the involvement of local communities in efforts to tackle terrorism.