13 Jul 2011

Indonesian police surround Islamic school

10:06 pm on 13 July 2011

Indonesian police are locked in a tense stand-off with armed students at an Islamic boarding school on Wednesday after a bomb blast killed a suspected terrorist two days earlier.

Police say the school is linked to radical cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, who was jailed for 15 years in June for funding a terrorist group that was planning attacks against Westerners and political leaders.

Security forces arrived at the school at Bima town, West Nusa Tenggara province, late on Monday after a home-made bomb exploded in one of the rooms, killing a man, AFP reports.

Local media have quoted police as saying the unidentified man was suspected of instructing students on how to make bombs when one of the devices exploded.

After the blast, hundreds of students and teachers armed with knives and traditional swords blocked the entrance, preventing police and soldiers from investigating the incident.

Provincial police spokesman Sukarman Husein said about 200 police and troops were deployed around the school but were keeping their distance so as not to aggravate the students.

Eight people were in custody in connection to the incident, Mr Husein said.