Suicide Bombers Attack Catholic Church In Indonesia On Palm Sunday
At least 20 people were injured in Indonesia after suicide bombers attacked a Roman Catholic Church on Palm Sunday, numerous sources reported.
The attack happened outside of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Cathedral in Makassar at around 10:30 a.m. Sunday morning, as a Palm Sunday mass was concluding, NPR reported.
No deaths were reported besides the attackers. The injured include church workers and worshipers.
Wilhemus Tulak, a priest at the church, told local media that the suspected attackers tried to enter the church grounds on motorbikes, but a security guard stopped them, Deutsche Welle reported. He said those who were injured were in serious condition.
“We were finishing the service and people were going home when it happened,” Tulak told reporters, according to Deutsche Welle.
A destroyed motorbike and body parts were found at the scene of the attack, according to the BBC. Makassar Mayor Danny Pomanto reportedly said that had the explosion happened at the church’s main entrance, there likely would have been casualties.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo called the attack an “act of terrorism” and said he ordered the police to investigate the “networks” that were responsible for the bombing, NPR reported. He also urged people to remain calm and affirmed that “the state guarantees the safety of religious people to worship without fear.”
No entity has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.
Indonesia has the world’s largest share of Muslims and has faced rising religious extremism, according to NPR. Extremists have targeted churches in the past in Indonesia. In 2018, a family of militant Islamists bombed three churches in Surabaya, killing 12. The clan of terrorists was believed to have ties to Jamaah Anshar Daulah (JAD), an extremist group that is affiliated with the Islamic State network in Indonesia. (RELATED: Entire Family Of ISIS-Linked Suicide Bombers Blows Up 3 Churches In Indonesia)
Days after, another family of suicide bombers attacked a police headquarters, the BBC reported.