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Last Updated: Sunday, 17 August, 2003, 07:31 GMT 08:31 UK
Ten held over Jakarta bombing
Indonesian security force patrol in Jakarta
Jakarta is on high alert for Independence Day

Indonesian police have arrested 10 people in connection with the bomb explosion at an international hotel in Jakarta earlier this month, the national chief of police has announced.

General Dai Bachtiar said they were arrested in two separate raids but gave few details of the suspects.

The explosion at the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta on 5 August killed 12 people and wounded 150.

News of the arrests come as Indonesia was on a heightened state of alert on Sunday as it marked 58 years of independence from Dutch colonial rule.

Security forces surrounded Jakarta's hotels, churches and offices owned by foreign companies.

We are still searching for several people who need to be arrested
General Bachtiar
After Independence Day ceremonies at the presidential palace General Bachtiar told reporters: "First we captured six people, and then four people."

He gave few other details, but added: "This is still developing. We are still searching for several people who need to be arrested."

A 28-year-old man from western Sumatra, Asmar Latinsani, has already been identified by police as the bomber alleged to have carried out the suicide attack.

His severed head was found at the scene and was identified by two jailed members of the Jemaah Islamiah group who said they had recruited him.

'Enemies within'

General Bachtiar's announcement comes days after the arrest of Hambali, an Indonesian whose real name is Riduan Isamuddin, the suspected head of Jemaah Islamiah group which has been linked with the blast.

Marriott Hotel, Jakarta

The group has also been blamed for the 2002 Bali bombing and other attacks around the region.

BBC correspondent Rachel Harvey says Indonesia's Independence Day will be a time for reflection as well as celebration for the country.

The hotel explosion and the continuing military conflict in the north-western province of Aceh has raised difficult questions about Indonesia's stability.

Our correspondent says that since the Jakarta bombing, the government appears more determined than ever to protect the unitary state of Indonesia.

Senior ministers say it is the time to stick together as the country is under attack.

But, perhaps the most worrying thing for Indonesia's leaders - our correspondent says - as they contemplate 58 years of independence from colonial rule is that these days the enemies appear to come from within.

The BBC's Rachel Harvey reports from Jakarta
"Even after these arrests the threat from militants remains very real"

In pictures: Indonesia's Independence Day
17 Aug 03  |  Photo Gallery
Jail demand for Indonesian cleric
12 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Jemaah Islamiah still a threat
15 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
US fears more Indonesia attacks
09 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Jakarta blast linked with Bali
06 Aug 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Aceh negotiators put on trial
29 Jul 03  |  Asia-Pacific
UN fears for Aceh civilians
30 May 03  |  Asia-Pacific


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