Multiple blasts and gunfire broke out mid-morning yesterday in the downtown area of Indonesia’s capital city, Jakarta. The terrorist group ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks.
The initial explosion took place in front of the Sarinah shopping mall, in an area home to many embassies, offices and luxury hotels. This explosion was soon followed by three more in the Jakarta neighborhoods near the Pakistani and Turkish embassies. One of the explosions took place near a Starbucks cafe, where a customer but no employees were injured.
In an early statement to the U.S. Embassy the Indonesian government referred to the explosions as a “terrorist attack,” a conclusion with which other world leaders agree, among them U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Saudi Arabia Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz.
Approximately seven hours after the mid-morning explosions (Jakarta local time) that killed seven people and wounded at least 10 others, the ISIS-affiliated news agency, Aamaq, reported that the terrorist organization was responsible for the Jakarta attacks. Later, ISIS released an official statement claiming responsibility for the attacks, although that statement claimed 15 deaths resulted, in conflict with the Indonesian government’s official report of seven deaths, five of which were the attackers. The two civilians killed during the attacks have been identified as an Indonesian and a Dutch citizen.
Indonesia, home to the world’s largest Muslim population, has been on high alert in recent months due to what government officials refer to as a foiled attack on the part of Islamic militants to attack government officials and foreigners.
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