The Indonesian government is bracing for possible reactions by local hard-line groups following Osama bin Laden’s death and stepping up security, officials said.
“We are anticipating the possibility that anything could happen,” said the coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs, Djoko Suyanto.
He was speaking after meeting President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and police, military and intelligence chiefs to discuss the impact of Bin Laden’s death.
“[Yudhoyono] told everyone to carry on and for everyone to increase alertness,” Djoko said.
Police should be anticipating possible targets and stepping up security there, he said. “People must also be involved in their neighborhood security, as security is not only the police’s and the military’s responsibility,” he added.
Military Chief Adm. Agus Suhartono called on the public to increase their alertness and report anything suspicious.
“We are monitoring the situation and anticipating the possibility [of an attack],” National Police Deputy Chief Comr. Gen. Nanan Sukarna told reporters.
The head of the National Counter-Terrorism Agency (BNPT), Ansyaad Mbai, said that Bin Laden’s death could provoke reprisals.
“Of course his death will have an impact. All this time, the reference for those who conduct terrorist acts were the fatwas [edicts] from Osama,” Ansyaad told reporters.
“They will attack anything, domestic and foreign, that poses an obstacle to these groups from establishing an Islamic state or imposing Shariah law,” he said.
Separately, National Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Boy Rafli Amar said that so far the US Embassy had not made a request for additional security. Markus Junianto Sihaloho, Farouk Arnaz & Arientha Primanita