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 Police check Poso comings and goings amid Operation Tinombala -

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BerichtOnderwerp: Police check Poso comings and goings amid Operation Tinombala -   zo 24 jan 2016 - 23:03

The Jakarta Post, Sun, January 24 2016.

The Poso Police were conducting spot checks of people and vehicles entering and leaving the city on Sunday as part of an intensified operation to hunt Indonesia's most-wanted terrorist, Santoso.

Police officers were deployed across Poso Pesisir subdistrict amid Operation Tinombala, a joint Indonesian Military (TNI) and police operation.

Santoso leads the East Indonesia Mujahidin (MIT) group, 45 members of which are believed be hiding in local forests. However, besides the main group led by Santono, police suspect the existence of second- and third-tier supporters and agents.

"There are many MIT supporters coming in and out of Poso. The checks are to find any members of the group attempting to infiltrate Poso," Poso Police chief Adj.Sr.Comr. Ronny Suseno told on Sunday.

Despite the step-up in the operation and related security checks, a suspected bomb was found in the city’s Kawua subdistrict on Sunday morning. Eye witnesses told that unknown parties had arrived in two cars and placed a black backpack containing the bomb at the side of the road in front of a resident's house.

Poso Police Gegana bomb disposal unit safely exploded the bomb on Sunday afternoon.

Meanwhile, more than 1,000 elite Navy troops arrived in Poso on Sunday, joining the 880 Army Special Forces (Kopassus) soldiers who arrived on Saturday.

The reinforcements join 2,000 soldiers and police officers already in the area as part of Operation Tinombala, which aims to capture Santoso and his group, who are believed to be responsible for several attacks against police personnel in Central Sulawesi.

The operation replaces 2015’s Operation Camar Maleo, which failed in its task to capture Santoso.

A member of MIT was shot by a soldier in a forest in Poso regency last week. Police said the man, initially thought to be Santoso himself, had been a senior organizer of attacks against individuals.

The government has tightened security and concentrated on the operation in the wake of a terrorist attack in Central Jakarta on Jan. 14 that killed four civilians and injured at least 25 others.

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