Thursday, October 05, 2006

Philippine troops capture Dulmatin's wife

MANILA (AP): Philippine troops have captured a woman believed to be the wife of a top Indonesian terror suspect wanted for attacks including the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings that killed 202 people, officials said Thursday.
The Indonesian wife of Dulmatin was captured early Wednesday in mountainous Patikul town on the southern island of Jolo, where a U.S.-backed offensive has targeted him and other al-Qaida-linked militants since Aug. 1, three intelligence officials saidon condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.
Authorities have not directly implicated the wife, identified as Istiada Oemar Sovie, to any terror attacks, but were holding her for possible immigration violations. She was being interrogated, the officials told The Associated Press.
The U.S. has offered a reward of US$10 million (euro7.8 million) for Dulmatin, an alleged bomb expert of the regional militant group Jemaah Islamiyah.
Officials have said he and another Indonesian terror suspect, Umar Patek, have fled to the southern Philippines where they've teamed up with the Abu Sayyaf and other Muslim rebel groups to set up terror training camps and plot attacks.
U.S.-trained army troops and marines also took into custody the couple's two children, ages 6 and 8, according to a military intelligence report.
It said that the troops raided a house where they found the wife and children, and that the wife told authorities she had four other children who were not with her.
The arrest of Dulmatin's wife bolsters military reports that the two Indonesian fugitives were still hiding on Jolo with local guerrillas, who also have been linked to Osama bin Laden's network and to a series of deadly bombings, high-profile ransomkidnappings and beheadings, the intelligence officials said.
They said she could be a source of valuable intelligence information.
The Indonesians have been reportedly sighted in recent months with Abu Sayyaf chieftain Khadaffy Janjalani, who is also on Washington's most wanted terror list, military officials have said.

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