Friday, January 12, 2007

Police kill two militants in raid

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Two people were killed and seven arrested alive when Police raided a place believed to be the hiding place of people suspected of involvement in the Poso riots, National Police Chief Gen Sutanto said on Thursday.

"They refused to surrender and thus legal action ahd to be taken," he told the press after an impromptu meeting with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

After the raid, police seized 18 firearms, five of which were police and Indonesian military standard weapons including revolvers and an M16 rifle.

Sutanto said poice also seized seven hand-made bombs.

UPDATE: Vice President Jusuf Kalla on Friday expressed his concern over the clashes between police and militants in Poso of Indonesia's Central Sulawesi province on Thursday, which killed two militants and one policeman.

"We are greatly concerned about the fatality from both sides," said Vice President Kalla.

The police shot dead two militants in raids on houses which were suspected of hiding place for the militants, who were allegedly involved in the sectarian strife between Muslims and Christians that erupted from 1999 to 2000.

After the burial of the militants, the mob attacked one police officer to dead, said the provincial police spokesman Muhammad Kilat.

The militants were part of dozens most wanted Muslims militants suspected of implicating in the sectarian clashes, said Poso police chief Rudi Suparyadi.

The sectarian conflict has left thousands of people dead, Suparyadi has said.

The vice president said the government has committed to settling the sectarian conflict in Poso by imposing firms rules.

"One of (the rules) is all the fugitive suspects must surrender, " he said.

The vice president is one of the mediators of the peace accord between the Christians and Muslims in the province in 2001.

The tense of security mounted last year after the killing of a Catholic priest in Palu, the capital of the province, and incident between police and Muslim communities in October, 2006.

In September last year, Indonesia executed three Christians for conviction of triggering mob into a sectarian violence in 2000 in Poso.

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