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Pattaya Daily News

31 August 2006 :: 10:08:04 am 32823

Stay out of Indonesia, tourists warned

CANBERRA - Terror cells in Indonesia are believed to be planning attacks on Western visitors in the next few months, a top spy has warned.
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Australian Security Intelligence Organisation Director-General Paul O‘Sullivan yesterday told a national security and business conference in Sydney that further attacks against Australians in the troubled archipelago were likely.

And the Foreign Affairs Department has urged Australians to reconsider travelling to Indonesia following a “stream of reporting” indicating that terrorists are in the advanced stages of planning attacks against Western interests, possibly between now and December.

New Zealand officials said last night their advice to travellers was the same as Canberra‘s – attacks could occur at any time, anywhere in Indonesia, at any location known to be frequented by foreigners.

Mr O‘Sullivan said terror group Jemaah Islamiyah remained a threat.

“Further attacks against Australians and Australian interests in Indonesia are likely, as key Jemaah Islamiyah indentities, including [bomb-maker] Noordin Mohd Top, remain at large.”

Noordin is believed to have been one of the masterminds of the two Bali bombings and the attacks on the Marriott Hotel and the Australian Embassy in Jakarta.

The Foreign Affairs Department‘s travel advice urges people not to travel to Indonesia, including Bali, and to leave if they are already there, or, if they decide to stay, to exercise “extreme caution”.

An extremist website has discussed possible attacks on foreigners in Jakarta‘s Kuningan district. The site also points to other potential targets in Jakarta, ranging from traffic slowing for entrances to toll roads and car parks, entertainment and sporting venues, shopping and exhibition centres, hotels and the city‘s zoo.

Further risks exist at restaurants and Western fast-food outlets – some have already been attacked – bars, cinemas, office buildings, churches and premises and symbols associated with the Indonesian Government.

New Zealand also regards the risk to its nationals as high across Indonesia, with extreme risk in some parts of the country.

Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Brad Tattersfield said Wellington‘s advice was to avoid non-essential and tourist travel to all of Indonesia, and to stay away entirely from areas where the threat is increased by sectarian and other violence.

“We‘ve had that level of advice pretty much since the first Bali bombing,” Mr Tattersfield said.

“The reason we have maintained that is because we continue to receive advice from a range of sources that this level of advice is warranted.”

By Greg Ansley
Read more here

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : World News

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