Poso terrorists may be linked with Bangkok bombing

Experts investigate the Erawan shrine at the site of a deadly blast in central Bangkok, Thailand, August 18, 2015.
PHOTO: Reuters

The police are currently looking into whether the East Indonesian Mujahidin (MIT) terrorist group led by Santoso in Poso, Central Sulawesi, has links to the recent bombing in Bangkok, Thailand, according to Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, as quoted by kompas.com.

No arrests have been made in relation to the recent bombing in Bangkok. According to some speculation, the Islamic State (IS) was behind the attack, and in Indonesia, the IS movement is allegedly supported by the MIT.

Luhut has said the terrorist group in Poso is being targeted by the police.

"We are currently pursuing [MIT]. I have received reports about their movements," said Luhut, with his reports having come from the National Police chief Comr. Gen. Badrodin Haiti.

A National Police (Polri) officer, Iptu Bryan Theophani, was killed during a shootout between the police and the MIT in Poso on Wednesday. According to Badrodin on Friday, the shooting was the fifth such incident this week.

Up to 140 Mobile Brigade (Brimob) officers from Kelapa Dua in Depok have been flown to Poso to assist with the operation.

The terrorist group is said to have 30 to 40 members.

"If we don't act, they can mobilize more power from various places, including weapons," said Badrodin.