Australian Foreign Minister Maryse Payne stressed that “Indonesia must ensure that the hard-line cleric, Abu Bakr Bashir, does not incite more violence when he is released from prison this week.”
“Our embassy in Jakarta has made clear our concerns, and the need for such individuals to be prevented from inciting others to carry out future attacks on innocent civilians,” Pine said.
It is worth noting that Abu Bakr Bashir (82 years old) was imprisoned in 2011 for “his association with militant training camps in the Indonesian province of Aceh,” and he is the spiritual leader of the Islamic Group’s network linked to the “Al Qaeda” organization, which was accused of planning nightclub bombings in Bali. According to the agency “Reuters”.
For his part, Bashir denied any connection with the Bali bombings, while a lawyer defending him did not immediately respond to a request for comment on his scheduled release next Friday.
More than 200 people were killed in the Bali bombings, including dozens of Australians. Fighters from the Jemaah Islamiyah have also been accused of masterminding an attack on the “JW Marriott Hotel in Jakarta”, which killed 12 people in 2003.