A major catch. “Police capture Asia terror leader,” by Kathy Quiano for CNN:
JAKARTA, Indonesia (CNN) — One of Southeast Asia’s most wanted terrorists is in police custody, an anti-terror police official in Indonesia has told CNN.
Abu Dujana, believed to be the leader of Jemaah Islamiyah’s military unit, was one of seven suspected terrorists detained in central Java over the past few days, the official said Tuesday.
Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) is a militant Islamist group active in several Southeast Asian countries. In 2002, it was added to a United Nations list of terrorist organizations linked to al Qaeda or the Taliban.
Police believe Abu Dujana’s arrest will deal a major blow to the organization. JI is believed to be responsible for major terror attacks in Indonesia, including the October 2002 Bali bombing, which killed 202 people, most of whom were foreigners.
There has been intense speculation as to who is leading Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) since its former leaders were arrested in 2000 and 2003.
But many Indonesian authorities believe Abu Dujana took over the organization and revitalized its military wing.
Authorities say Abu Dujana was instrumental in the planning and execution of the 2003 Marriott Hotel bombing and the 2004 Australian Embassy attack, both in Jakarta.
The hotel bombing killed 12 people and 10 people died in the embassy attack.
He was also accused of directing operations in Poso, Central Sulawesi, sending jihad fighters there to foment sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians.
Abu Dujana studied in Pakistan and fought in Afghanistan from 1988 to 1991. He is one of the few remaining mujahideen fighters in JI and police say he has close personal ties with al Qaeda.
He is also believed to have spent several years in Jemaah Islamiyah training camps in the southern Philippines.
Brig. Gen Surya Dharma, a senior police official, told CNN in March that Abu Dujana is “a very dangerous and clever man.”
“He’s an expert in weapon training, small arms, heavy weapons and artillery,” Dharma said. “All actions, military actions by JI is controlled a hundred percent by Abu Dujana.”