Suicide bomber targeting police station in Solo blows himself up, 1 policeman injured

The attacker was killed at the scene of the attempted attack in Surakarta, Indonesia.
The attacker was killed at the scene of the attempted attack in Surakarta, Indonesia. PHOTO: @HUMASPOLISI/TWITTER

JAKARTA - A suicide bomber on a motorcycle, who was targeting the local police headquarters in Solo city, blew himself up after he was stopped by officers from entering the building on Tuesday morning (July 5).

The attacker, who has yet to be identified, tried to barge into the police station at about 7.35 am local time, according to Central Java Police Chief Inspector General Condro Kirono.

"A member of the security personnel tried to intercept the attacker but he reversed, and tried to get away," he said.


The aftermath of the bombing at the police station in Surakarta, Indonesia. PHOTO: @HUMASPOLISI/TWITTER

"During the pursuit by the police, the perpetrator detonated the bomb."

The attacker was killed at the scene. There were no other fatalities but a police officer was slightly wounded, said General Condro.

Preliminary reports indicated that the bomber had used low grade explosives in the homemade bomb, which like most improvised explosive devices (IEDs), contained ball-bearings and screws.

Security forces have been on high alert in recent months in Indonesia where people will be celebrating the end of Ramadan on Wednesday.

The latest incident follows the Jan 14 attack in the capital Jakarta by four militants with links to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

It also comes a day after police in Malaysia confirmed that ISIS elements were behind last week's Movida night club bombing which left eight people injured.

Solo, also known as Surakarta, is the birthplace of Indonesian President Joko Widodo. He served as the city's mayor for seven years from 2005 before becoming governor of Jakarta in 2012. 

Speaking to the media during his visit to Padang city in West Sumatra, Mr Joko said he has been briefed on the incident and that the situation in Solo is under control.

 

"We hope people will stay calm but remain vigilant. Tomorrow we are entering Idul Fitri  and I have ordered the police chief to pursue the (terrorist) network, arrest and reveal those behind this suicide bombing," said Mr Joko. "So stay calm and carry out our last day of fasting devotedly."

Referring to the recent string of terror attacks in Turkey, Bangladesh, Iraq and Saudi Arabia, the President said: "An act of terror for any cause is a wrongful act, there is no tolerating such acts."

When asked by a reporter if he will be visiting Solo, Mr Joko said there was no change to his travel plans.

National police spokesman Inspector General Boy Rafli Amar said the suicide bomber took time to survey the area. "He even stopped by a cafeteria to study the surroundings, that raised suspicion (among the officers nearby)," he added.

General Condro said the officer injured during the attack is in stable condition and the police are standing by for investigators from the counter-terrorism unit Detachment 88 to take over the case.