The Islamic State has attacked Indonesia, marking the first time that the terrorist group has targeted the world’s most populous Muslim nation. The attack was conducted on Thursday by gunmen and suicide bombers in the center of the Indonesian capital city of Jakarta. A total of seven people were killed in the attack, though five of the casualties were of the attackers themselves.
The attack, which went on for nearly three hours, took place nearby a Starbucks and the Sarinah’s department store. In the attack, the team of extremists traded gunfire with the police before eventually blowing themselves up. The incident took the lives of one Indonesian and one Canadian. At least twenty other people were wounded in the process.
The chief of the Jakarta Police Department, who said that a man named Bahrun Naim was responsible for plotting the attack stated, "ISIS is behind this attack definitely."
It is currently believed that Bahrun Naim is hiding out in the Syrian city of Raqqa.
The terrorist attack featured at least six explosions and a gunfight in a movie theater. However, the weapons used by the terrorists were particularly weak. This explains why they were only able to kill two people in the end.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo has since informed his country that people should be scared or defeated by unfortunate acts of terrorism.
It was reported during the attack that the windows of the Starbucks were shot out and that at least one attacker took to the building’s roof. Police forces had responded to the attack within mere minutes, as black armored vehicles and sniper teams were deployed to the scene. Meanwhile, helicopters flew overhead to monitor the situation from above.
One terrorist entered the Starbucks and blew himself up, injuring several people inside. As people fled the Starbucks, two waiting gunmen opened fire on them. Meanwhile, two additional militants attacked a nearby police traffic post using grenade-like bombs. The attacks caused the city center’s infamously jammed roads to become almost entirely deserted.
The coordination and orchestration of the attacks has reminded many people of the deadly terrorist attacks that took place in Paris last November. While Indonesia has been attacked by non-ISIS militants in the past, the country has never seen such a coordinated assault by a team of gunmen and suicide bombers.
In July of 2009, the JW Marriot and the Ritz Carlton hotels in Jakarta were attacked in a bombing. In 2002, a bombing at a nightclub on the holiday island of Bali killed 202 people.