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Indonesia takes orchestrated efforts to prevent terrorism

JAKARTA, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- Indonesian Vice President Boediono spearheaded national efforts to prevent and de- radicalizing terrorism as threats of violence persist despite nearly a decade of intensive police attention, local media reported on Tuesday.

Boediono on Monday oversaw the first meeting of ministers and anti-terrorism experts to develop and implement a new plan. He said even though the meeting came soon after several significant threats of terror, its convening was not a reactionary move but had been high on the agenda of the National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) for some time.

The vice president said he would coordinate with 24 government ministries and agencies to produce a terror prevention and de- radicalization plan to be implemented next year.

He said the fight against terror and radical ideas had been waged sporadically, with too much emphasis on repressive actions and not enough on preventative and de-radicalization efforts. Worse, he decried a lack of coordination among different agencies, creating the impression that the government was always late in responding to terrorism.

"This de-radicalization blueprint will be comprehensive and will really serve the purpose," Boediono said after the meeting.

Late on Monday, BNPT chief Ansyaad Mbai announced that multiple terror cells uncovered recently were linked to Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid, which he called "the reincarnation of Darul Islam," a subversive religious movement outlawed in the 1950s.

"Their enemies are the four pillars of our Indonesian nationhood, namely the state ideology Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution, the philosophy of Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (Unity in Diversity), and NKRI (the Unitary Republic of Indonesia)," he said.

"They want to establish a caliphate and their leader is provoking them even from jail to continue the struggle."

He did not mention names, but speculation has swirled that recent allusions to a jailed leader refer to imprisoned cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, whose Islamic boarding school in Ngruki, Central Java, is where some recent terror suspects and other long-jailed convicts were educated.

His son Abdurrahman now leads the local group JAT and has repeatedly rejected police assertions that the organization is involved in terrorism. Abdurrahman maintains the organization is an Islamic propaganda forum of good intentions.

Boediono insisted the government would draw up a comprehensive plan acceptable to all parties. The government would not reinstate dictatorial remedies of the past and would instead make sure the goal of de-radicalization and terror prevention was attained without creating unnecessary societal upheaval.

Meanwhile, Coordinating Minister for Political and Security Affairs Djoko Suyanto said Ansyaad would be assisted by four deputies handling prevention and de-radicalization, response to terror, coordination and international cooperation.

Djoko added that the vice president would involve various organizations, including the Indonesian Council of Ulema, Nahdlatul Ulama, Muhammadiyah, the Lazuardi Biru de-radicalization foundation, the Indonesian Institute of Sciences, universities, the National Police, Indonesian Military, and the ministries of education, religious affairs, youth and sports, and social affairs.

The finalization of the blueprint will involve the National Development Planning Agency and the Ministry of Finance before it is presented to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono for approval by the end of the year.

Yudhoyono has said that terrorism took root in Indonesia long before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks in the United States. He blamed three major factors -- radicalization on the international front, incorrect interpretation of religious doctrines and socioeconomic factors such as poor education and poverty, though he was quick to acknowledge that in some cases terrorists were well-educated people.

Ansyaad said that any efforts by the vice president's team would have to be supplemented by another law on terrorism funding and radical behavior.

 

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