Indonesia: Deadly Surabaya church attacks committed by family

DW – May 13, 2018

At least 13 people were killed and around 40 were injured on Sunday, when explosions hit three churches during morning Mass in the Indonesia’s second-largest city, Surabaya.

Police said the three churches were hit by a family of suicide bombers with links to the local extremist network Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), which supports the “Islamic State” (IS) jihadist group. Authorities warned that the death toll is likely to rise.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo was quick to condemn the attacks and the use of children as suicide bombers. “These terrorist attacks are cruel and inhuman,” Widodo said after visiting victims at a hospital in Surabaya. “There are no words to describe our sorrow for the victims of this act of terrorism.”

One witness at the Diponegoro Christian Church told local media that the mother and her daughters were initially denied access to the church grounds by security guards, but they insisted and forced their way inside. “Suddenly she hugged a civilian then (the bomb) exploded,” the witness said.

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