Saturday, July 18, 2009

Explosion at JW Marriott and Ritz Carlton

I was informed by my mother yesterday that the television are busy reporting the news about the explosion in Jakarta. The bomber is in action again. This time,they exploded JW Marriott, the famous five stars hotel in Indonesia and also Ritz Carlton, the high end hotel in Jakarta.

This is the second time they explode JW Marriott. The first explosion happened on 5 august 2003. Here is the news as reported on CNN:

JAKARTA, Indonesia (CNN) -- Indonesian authorities
believe two suicide bomberschecked into the JW Marriott Hotel in Jakarta and carried out coordinatedbombings Friday morning, killing themselves and at least six victims andwounding more than 50 others.

A body is removed following the blasts at the Ritz-Carlton and the nearby J.W. Marriott hotels in Jakarta on Friday.

It is unclear what group is behind the attacks on the Marriott and the adjacent Ritz-Carlton hotel, Indonesia's National Police Chief Gen. BambangHendarso said at a news conference. He warned that the death toll could rise.In addition to their victims, the two bombers also died in the attacks.Eight American nationals were among the wounded, according to the U.S. StateDepartment.

Investigators are also analyzing closed-circuit televisionfootage from the Marriott that shows a man, sporting a baseball cap and pullinga wheeled suitcase, heading toward the JW Marriott Hotel's lobby-levelrestaurant seconds before the deadly blast.

Five victims and one suicide bomber were killed at the Marriott, according to police spokesman Inspector General Nanan Soekarna.

Minutes later, another suicide bomber struck the adjacent Ritz-Carlton,
killing one person and the bomber. Indonesian national police confirmed that the man seen in
the CCTV video, distributed by Indonesian television, is being investigated in connection
with the blast.

"We are suspecting the man in the footage because the time frame
matches with the timeof the bombing," national police spokesman Nanan Soekarma said. "It is obviouslypremature to confirm it right now as we will have to wait for the lab resultsand the investigation to conclude."Indonesian authorities have detainedseveral witnesses and others for questioning, and have sent forensic evidencefrom the scene for testing, a spokesman for Indonesian President Susilo BambangYudhoyono said."It's all being studied now," Dino Patti Djalal told CNN.

Yudhoyono warned that it is still too early to determine who was behindthe attacks."This terrorist action is thought to be the work of a terrorist group, even though it is not certain whether this is the terrorism which we arefamiliar with up until now," the recently reelected president said.Thebombings at the two luxury hotels -- which are connected by an undergroundtunnel -- happened shortly before 8 a.m. (9 p.m. Thursday ET), first at theMarriott and then 10 minutes later at the Ritz-Carlton, police officials said.

Both blasts struck the hotels' restaurants and several prominentinternational business leaders were among the casualties. Anunexploded bomb was found on the Marriott Hotel's 18th floor where severalsuspects believed to be linked to the bombings were staying, Hendarsosaid.Indonesian investigators believe the bombers checked into the Marriott on Wednesday and were scheduled to check out on Friday, he added.It isunclear how they got around the "robust security" at the hotels, according toAlan Orlob, security chief for Marriott Hotels. Ritz-Carlton is a subsidiary of Marriott. Orlob said there had been no indication of any "immediate threat inJakarta."

Security has been extremely high at the Marriott hotel inJakarta since it was struck by a car bombing in August 2003 that killed 12people.Suspicion immediately fell on Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), the Islamistterrorist network with ties to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda terrorist network thatwas tied to the 2003 Marriott attack and the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings thatkilled more than 200 people, mostly foreign tourists.

Hendarso said the typeof explosives found were similar to those found in a recent raid on a home inWest Java that was linked to Noordin Top, a suspected leader of a small JIsplinter group that espouses the use of large-scale terror attacks to push forthe establishment of Islamic states in the region. So far, there has been noclaim of responsibility for the latest attack. Al Jazeera English reported that it was in touch with a JI member who denied any involvement in Friday's hotel bombings. The fatalities include New Zealand national Timothy DavidMcKay, 60, according to Indonesia's state-run Antara New Agency.

McKay -- theCEO of Holcim Indonesia, a cement company -- was at the hotel for a breakfast meeting with fellow prominent business leaders, the Jakarta Postreported.Indonesian media also reported that two directors of FreeportIndonesia, the largest copper and gold mining company in Indonesia, were woundedin the attacks on the two hotels.English soccer team Manchester United canceled its trip to Indonesia after the bombing. It had been scheduled to checkinto the Ritz-Carlton on Sunday.

Hotel guests said the first blast at theMarriott shook the building. The second blast at the Ritz-Carlton apparently struck the hotel restaurant on the second floor, according to witnesses. Theforce of the blast blew out the windows on the Ritz-Carlton's secondfloor."The shocking part was entering the lobby, where the glass at thefront of the hotel was all blown out and blood was spattered across the floor,but most people were leaving calmly," hotel guest Don Hammer said.

Greg Woolstencroft said he had just walked past the hotels to his nearby apartmentwhen he heard an explosion."I looked out my window and I saw a huge cloud ofbrownish smoke go up," he told CNN in a telephone interview. "I grabbed myiPhone to go downstairs ... and then the second bomb went off at theRitz-Carlton, so I then ran around to the Ritz-Carlton and I was able to findthat there had been a massive bomb that went off in this ... restaurant area andthe explosion had blown out both sides of the hotel."

Woolstencroft said he saw a body that "looked like someone who had been a suicide bomber or someone who had been very, very close to the explosion."The chief technology officer for a television station said he had lived at the Ritz for a year beforemoving to his nearby apartment, and had been impressed by the facility's security."I just don't know how someone could get in there with a bomb, given the level of security and screening that people have to go through," hesaid, citing armed guards at checkpoints and thorough searches of people, bagsand vehicles

This is The CCTV video:



Emergency numbers

Marriott/Ritz-Carlton Family Assistance

Hotline

+1 8662114610

+14023903265


My deepest condolences to the member of the victim's family and to my nation. I hope we can get through this and we never give up to fight against the terorist.

regards,



2 comments:

G said...

Ngeri banget....!

Denise said...

I am so very sorry about this my friend, love you.

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