Bali bombers inspired by Usama bin Laden

The men accused of being behind the Bali bombings were inspired by Usama bin Laden, according to a witness statement read on Thursday at the trial of one of the suspects.

    Imam Samudra is one of three
    suspects on trial for Bali bombings

    The court was also told the men were given money by a Malaysian member of Jemaah Islamiah.

    Prosecutor Nyoman Dila said Malaysian Wan Min bin Wan Mat,  Jemaah Islamiah's alleged treasurer, had admitted supplying US$35,000 for operations in Indonesia to Mukhlas,  a 43-year-old preacher accused of masterminding the bombings.

    "Wan Min thought the money was going to be used for executing operations in Indonesia", Dila said during the trial of Imam Samudra, another suspect.
     
    The funding link to Wan Min has been mentioned in various indictments in the case but not previously detailed in court.

    Mukhlas allegedly handed out the cash to those taking part in the October Bali bombings, which killed 202 people, most of them Australian tourists.

    Wan Min said he was not involved in the planning or execution of the Bali bombings but thought it could have been aimed at foreigners "regarded as infidels and the enemy of Islam" in line with calls from bin Laden and Jemaah Islamiah leaders, the prosecutor said.

    Pan-Islamic goal

    Jemaah Islamiah held a meeting in Bangkok in February 2002 to plan the Bali bombing and a strike on a western target in Singapore, according to Wan Min's statement.

    Many of the 34 suspects arrested over the blasts have admitted to being members of Jemaah Islamiah, a group whose goal is to establish a pan-Islamic state across southeast Asia.

    The group has been accused of planning a series of other attacks on western targets throughout the region, including Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines.

    Mukhlas along with his brother Amrozi bin Nurhasyim and Imam Samudra, a 33-year-old computer expert, are the only suspects to go on trial so far. They face the death sentence if convicted.

    Samudra’s trial has been adjourned until July 16.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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