Suicide bomber attacks church in Indonesia

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 25, 2011 4:48 AM
Suicide bomber attacks church in Indonesia

JAKARTA (Reuters) - A suspected suicide bomber attacked a church on Indonesia's Java island on Sunday, killing himself and one other person, a police officer and a government minister said.

Seventeen people were wounded in the explosion outside a Protestant church just after Sunday service in the city of Solo, local police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Djihartono told Reuters.

"The one killed in front of the church is highly suspected as the suicide bomber. A total of 17 people are wounded and treated," he said.

The coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs, Djoko Suyanto, said authorities wold examine closed circuit footage from the church to identify the suicide bomber.

Solo is the hometown of radical Muslim cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, considered the spiritual leaders behind the group that killed more than 200 people in Bali in 2002.

Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim Country, has been the scene of some major attacks by militants and radical groups over the past decade, but there have been few attacks recently.

Religious tensions still bubble near the surface in the officially secular nation. Religious conflicts flared up between Muslims and Christians in Maluku and Sulawesi, in the eastern part of the sprawling archipelago, following the overthrow of former President Suharto in 1998.

(Reporting by Christianto Nusatya; Editing by Sugita Katyal)