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Last Updated: Monday, 26 January, 2004, 10:30 GMT
Marriott attack 'targeted US'
Mohammed Rais
Mohammed Rais could face the death penalty
A suspected Islamic militant has told a court that Americans were the target of last October's attack on the Marriott hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Mohammed Rais, accused of recruiting the suicide bomber who carried out the attack, said he regretted that most of those who died were in fact Indonesian.

The bombing killed 12 people, including a Dutch man, and injured 150.

The main suspects in the case - Malaysians Azahari Husin and Noordin Mohammed Top - are still at large.

"I'm remorseful because Muslims became victims. The ones who I targeted were Americans. Now I have to be accountable because I was indeed involved in the Marriott bombing," Mr Rais, 28, told the court before the judge adjourned proceedings until 4 February.

The indictment read out in court said that Mr Rais introduced Asmar Latin Sani, who carried out the bombing, to Azahari Husin and Noordin Mohammed Top in January 2003.

"The defendant knew that Asmar Latin Sani had strong determination to carry out jihad and had the intention to die as a martyr," said prosecutor Andi Herman.

The indictment also accuses Mr Rais of collecting large quantities of potassium chlorate for use in the Marriott blast.

Mr Rais is the second suspect to go on trial in connection with the case.

Prosecutors have called for a nine-year jail sentence for Sardona Siliwangi, who is in court in Sumatra, for storing explosives.

Mr Rais, Dr Azahari and Mr Noordin are all believed to be members of the Jemaah Islamiah militant Islamic group, which several governments have linked to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda.

Dr Azahari allegedly helped build one of the bombs used in the Bali nightclub bombings in 2002, which killed 202 people, while Mr Noordin is suspected of helping to finance the attack.

Dr Azahari is accused of masterminding the Marriott hotel attack, and Mr Noordin of helping to build the bomb.

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06 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
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05 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Scenes of panic and carnage in Jakarta
05 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific


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