Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hasanuddin group suspected of killing Clergyman

TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta: Indonesia’s National Police (Polri) is still convinced that the Hasanuddin group was the perpetrator of the shooting to death of clergyman Irianto Kongkoli shooting on Monday (16/10). This group, which disagrees with peace in Poso, previously shot clergyman Susianti Tinulele on July 18, 2004. Chief Comm. Bambang Kuncoko, Polri spokesperson, said the police are not excluding the possibility that there is another group imitating the Hasanuddin group’ methods. “However, imitators have weaknesses,” he said. According to the police department, the methods used in the murder this time are very similar to the Hasanuddin group’s methods. The Central Sulawesi Regional Police are of the same opinion. “The mode of operation was the same as with the shooting of clergyman Susianti Tinulele. The action was rapid, a shot was fired then the perpetrators disappeared,” said Brig. Gen. Badrodin Haiti, Chief of the Central Sulawesi Regional Police. However, he was not yet prepared to conclude that the Hasanuddin group was behind this recent shooting. Hasanuddin and three of his accomplices has been under detention since April, 2005, at the Polri Headquarters. He is suspected of being involved in riots in Poso, including the mutilation of three Poso High School female students, bombing at Tentena Market and the murder of a clergyman. According to the police, the Hasanuddin group is a small group that is not satisfied with the Malino Agreement that was initiated by Jusuf Kalla, who was the Coordinating Minister for People’s Welfare at that time. The police have stated that Hasanuddin came from the Poso Mujahidin Assembly group. Clergyman Irianto was known as a priest who supported peace. He was also close to well-known Islam leaders and often held cross-religion events. Irianto was shot dead by four unknown people wearing masks, Monday (16/10), when he was with his wife and child at a hardware store in Palu.

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