06 August 2009

Abu Ba`asyir doesn`t believe Noordin M Top behind Jakarta bombings

Bulukumba, South Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - Abubakar Ba`asyir, head of the Ngruki Al-Mukmin Muslim Boarding School in Solo, said he did not believe the recent hotel bombings in Jakarta were the work of fugitive terror mastermind Noordin M Top.

"The bomb attacks on the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta were engineered by the CIA (of the United States) to cause the Indonesian government to increase its pressure on the struggle of Muslims," he said.

Ba`asyir was commenting on the posting on the Internet of a statement attributed to Noordin M Top claiming responsibility for the July 17 hotel bombings. He spoke to reporters before giving a religious lecture at Bulukumba`s Agung Mosque on Thursday.

He said the two bombed hotels in Jakarta were US-owned and protected by maximum security systems making it impossible for outsiders to bring in explosives. "Therefore, I believe the CIA engineered the attacks so as to create another tragedy for which Muslims could be blamed," he said.

Asked why in media reports on terrorist activity he was often linked to the violence, Ba`asyir said he did not approve of the resort to terror bombings to further the aims of Islam. "This was all orchestrated by the US in order to make Muslims in the world hate me," he said.

Meanwhile, the local organizers of Ba`asyir`s visit in Bulukumba had initially expected his lecture at the Agung Mosque to be attended by about 2,000 Muslims but in reality only about 500 showed up. Most of the audience were members of Bulukumba`s Islamic Community Forum (FUI). (*)


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