From AP, :
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) Indonesia plans to formally outlaw the al-Qaida-linked terror group Jemaah Islamiyah, a move that will make it easier for authorities to arrest and prosecute militants in the world’s most populous Muslim nation, a top security official said Monday.
Banning the organization which is listed by the United Nations as a terrorist group will please the United States and other foreign governments but risks opposition from Muslim groups and political parties that fear it may herald a broader crackdown on Islamic activists.
It would really help if somebody knew where the line was between terrorism and plain ole “Islamic activities.” Where will they draw this line, given that Islam is inherently political?
Ansyaad Mbai, who heads the counterterrorism desk at Indonesia’s Coordinating Ministry for Political and Security Affairs, said the government intends to outlaw the group, which is blamed for a host of attacks and plots throughout Southeast Asia, including the 2002 Bali nightclub attacks….
Authorities have locked up more than 150 militants in the last three years, but officials balk at publicly identifying them as belonging to Jemaah Islamiyah or being motivated by sympathy with al-Qaida.
Part of the reluctance to ban Jemaah Islamiyah rests on its name, which means “Islamic community.” Proponents of an Islamic state in secular Indonesia, who were brutally repressed under former dictator Suharto, fear that such a ban could mean they too will be targeted.
“They too?” Aren’t terrorists THE proponents of an Islamic state? What’s the difference? Where’s the line?
Mbai said that banning the group was essential in the fight against terror.
“We know there are many JI members who have got military training and have the ability to make bombs and use weapons who are still around, but the police cannot arrest them unless there is evidence they are involved in a particular act of terrorism,” Mbai said….
Gee, Mbai, you don’t think the reason why they’re getting all this training is to fight for an Islamic state? Well, I guess maybe it’s just for the exercise.
Jemaah Islamiyah’s alleged spiritual leader, Abu Bakar Bashir, was sentenced to 30 months in jail earlier this month for conspiracy in the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings that killed 202 people. Analysts have said prosecutors would have been able to build a stronger case against the 66-year-old cleric if they had been able to directly charge him with heading the group….
It also continues to be noteworthy how nobody seems to bat an eye at all these Islamic clerics who also double as terrorists.