Indonesia trial on cleric adjourned

Indonesia charged the most well-known cleric cleric on Monday for planning to use weapons "to commit acts of terror".

Indonesia trial on cleric adjourned

Indonesia charged the most well-known cleric cleric on Monday for planning to use weapons "to commit acts of terror".

The trial of Abu Bakar Bashir, 72, on Monday began in a court filled with supporters shouting "Allahu akbar" or "God is greatest".

The trial of the cleric, which opened last week but was immediately adjourned on a technicality.

"Defendant Abu Bakar Bashir has planned or mobilised others to illegally...use firearms, ammunition, or explosives in order to commit terrorism," prosecutor Andi Muhammad Taufik told the south Jakarta court.

Bashir is also accused of funding a paramilitary training camp in westernmost Aceh province. Police said the Aceh-based group had planned to assassinate President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at an independence day ceremony last August.

Bashir said whether he was acquitted or sentenced to death -- the maximum penalty for the charges -- was in God's hands.

"I am only defending Islam," he said from a holding cell. "Aceh was accused of being terrorism but Aceh was an order from God."

Another prosecutor, Totok Bambang, said Bashir had collected money to buy rifles and funded military activities in Aceh.

"The weapons were then used by the camp's participants to attack police," Bambang said.

Bashir's supporters, watching from a television outside the courtroom, shouted: "Lies! Prosecutors are lying!"

The trial was adjourned again to Feb 24.

A spokesman for Bashir's followers said that 250 people came from various areas in Java on Monday to lend support for their leader.

Bashir is also the "Amir" of the legitimate Jema'ah Ansharut Tauhid (JAT) Islamic group, which draws support from thousands of youths who attend public rallies and sermons by preachers.

Agencies

Last Mod: 14 Şubat 2011, 13:47
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