Suspected militant injured by bike bomb

A suspected Islamic militant was critically injured when a home-made bomb strapped to the back of his bicycle detonated prematurely just outside Indonesia’s capital, Jakarta, today, police said.

Police spokesman Colonel Boy Rafli Amar said the intended target was not immediately clear.

The low-explosive device, packed with ball bearings and nails to maximise the intensity of the blast, apparently went off accidentally when the suspect was 100 yards from a police post in the industrial suburb of Bekasi. No-one else was injured.

Indonesia, a secular nation with more Muslims than any other in the world, has been battling terrorists since 2002, when militants linked to the South-east Asian network Jemaah Islamiyah started attacking Western nightclubs, restaurants and embassies.

A new home-grown terror cell discovered in February in westernmost Aceh province has identified the country’s security apparatus as one of its main targets. Scores of militants have been arrested or killed since then.

Col Amar said the suspected bicycle bomber was rushed to hospital in a critical condition.

Police are hoping to question him about a letter in his back pocket which said he wanted “revenge for his friends”.

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