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Cablegate: North Maluku: None Injured by Three Bombs Linked To

VZCZCXRO1455
RR RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJS #0127 3081009
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 031009Z NOV 08
FM AMCONSUL SURABAYA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0322
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0156
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA 0307
RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 0327
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 0052

UNCLAS SURABAYA 000127

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR EAP, EAP/MTS, INR/EAP,

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV ID KISL PTER PHUM
SUBJECT: NORTH MALUKU: NONE INJURED BY THREE BOMBS LINKED TO
PROTRACTED ELECTION DISPUTE

REF: 07 SURABAYA 59 (North Maluku Election Violence)

This message is sensitive but unclassified. Please protect
accordingly.

1. (SBU) Summary: Indonesia's official news agency reported
that there were no injuries from "low-magnitude explosions" at
three locations in North Maluku's provincial capital Ternate
early in the morning of November 3. The blasts hit the North
Maluku Governor's residence, the North Maluku regional
government Office and the North Maluku Regional Legislative
Assembly (DPRD). Given the targets of the blasts and a
demonstration against the incumbent governor only hours later,
the bombings are likely the work of supporters of the defeated
governor's candidate. Hundreds of supporters of Abdul Gafur and
his running mate Fabanyo later clashed with police when they
tried to storm the offices of North Maluku's Governor.
Demonstrators demanded President Yudhoyono rescind his decree
installing Thaib Armayn and Vice Governor Abdul Gani Kasuba.
End Summary

2. (SBU) Local press reported that the first explosion damaged
one side of North Maluku Governor Thaib Armaiyn's official
residence. Five minutes later, a second explosion destroyed the
ceiling of the Financial Bureau of the North Maluku Governor's
Office. The third blast hit the Provincial Parliament (DPRD)
building, shattering glass windows in the guard post outside.
There were no reports of injuries. Two Congen Surabaya contacts
in Ternate confirmed the location and timing of the blasts and
estimated that the bombs could be heard over 3 kilometers away.
North Maluku police have cordoned off the sites of the
explosions and closed the road near Governor's residence. North
Maluku's Police Chief Brig. Gen. Mustafa told local press that
his officers found a fourth bomb at the Governor's residence
that failed to detonate. Bomb Squad Unit Chief Asst. Inspector
Adi Sangaji confirmed to Congen Surabaya the general impression
that the bombs are unrelated to the anticipated execution of the
Bali bombers. Inspector Sangaji reiterated that the bombs were
likely set by people dissatisfied over the national government's
installation of the current Governor.

3. (SBU) Demonstrations against the installation of the current
governor erupted again in Ternate at 11:00 AM local time, just
seven hours after the explosions. The situation in North Maluku
remains tense, as supporters burned the party flag of President
Yudhoyono's party, Partai Demokrat, and threatened to continue
demonstrations throughout the day. This is the latest violence
in nearly a year of strife over the disputed outcome of the
November 2007 governor's election (Ref A). Incumbents Thaib
Armayn and Abdul Gani Kasuba were officially installed as
Governor and Vice Governor on September 29, 2008. Minister of
Home Affairs Mardiyanto reinstalled the incumbents nearly a year
after a contentious election marred by sporadic violent
protests. Only 14 of 35 local members of parliament attended
the inauguration and supporters of the defeated candidates Abdul
Gafur and Abdurahim Fabanyo quickly took to the streets again in
protest.

MCCLELLAND

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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