64 Injured in Catholic Church Bombing in Indonesia

Wahid, Facing Impeachment, Declares State of Emergency

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share this Entry

JAKARTA, Indonesia, JULY 23, 2001 (Zenit.org).- A bomb explosion during a Sunday morning Mass injured 64, including two people who lost their legs. The blast had come on the eve of a showdown between the supreme legislative assembly and President Abdurrahman Wahid.

Early today, the embattled Wahid declared a state of emergency, assuming wide-ranging powers just hours before an impeachment hearing, Reuters reported.

The explosion took place in St. Anne´s Catholic Church, attended by some 800 faithful. The priest was just beginning the homily when the bomb went off in the church, located in a military complex in east Jakarta.

The parish priest, Father Suryanto, said the roof caved in while the horrified faithful ran for cover. At least 14 of the wounded were admitted to hospitals.

A second bombing a half-hour later at a Protestant church occurred after the service ended. No one was injured.

«These (bombings) were done by people who want to cause chaos and create insecurity in Jakarta during the special session,» police spokesman Anton Bahrul Alam told Reuters.

The second attack occurred in the Protestant church in Huriah Kristen Batak, about three kilometers (two miles) from St. Anne´s Church. The bomb was planted in a minibus parked outside the church, police say.

Susanto, president of the Indonesian Catholic Society, said that the attacks were the work of «groups that try to create chaos by using terror.»

The explosions occurred the day after the Popular Consultative Assembly, the nation´s highest legislative body, summoned President Wahid to an impeachment hearing. Wahid said his emergency decree would dissolve the top assembly as well as the Parliament.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share this Entry


Support ZENIT

If you liked this article, support ZENIT now with a donation