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June 24, 2020, 08.09 PM

JAKARTA, – Terrorists have not stopped recruiting new members in Indonesia despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to the National Counter Terrorism Agency (BNPT) on June 23.

Newly-inaugurated Chief of BNPT Boy Rafli Amar shared valuable insights on terrorism activities during a meeting in Jakarta.

“Radical groups remain active by recruiting using propaganda. This is done both online and offline throughout the coronavirus pandemic,” said Boy.

Read also: Foreign Minister: 114,587 Indonesians Returned Home amid Coronavirus Pandemic

BNPT has coordinated with relevant law enforcement authorities to respond to these findings.

Boy said that around 84 individuals are under surveillance due to their connections with terrorist networks.

These suspects had plans to launch a terrorist attack but were successfully thwarted as confirmed by Boy.

“Our findings from January to June show about 84 suspects with connections to terrorist activities. They are also being monitored and investigated by law enforcement officials,” said Boy.

Part of BNPT’s initiative is to combat radical ideologies spreading online in line with a rising trend in online connectivity in Indonesia.

Read also: Erick Thohir: Coronavirus Pandemic Pushing Indonesia to Go Digital

The misuse of the online world has also increased across the country. Incidences of misuse mostly involve the dissemination of information related to terrorism, intolerance, and radicalism.

“This is BNPT’s duty to find a solution in countering these radical beliefs that go against the principles of Pancasila,” said Boy, referring to Indonesia’s state philosophy created by the country’s first president, Soekarno.

BNPT has added three new deputies to the team and now has a total of six to lead the Counterterrorism Agency.

This expansion is in keeping with Law No. 5 Year 2018 on BNPT, according to Boy.

The six deputies include the Deputy of System and Policy, Deputy of Counterradicalism, Deputy of International Cooperation, and Deputy of Deradicalization Department.

Preserving diversity, preventing radicalism

The BNPT chief remarked on June 10 that every generation has the duty to continue an understanding of diversity in a bid to prevent the spread of radicalism.

Indonesia prides itself on its diversity as reflected in the country’s Constitution.

Indonesia’s Counterterrorism Agency is working together with a range of religious figures to address the problem of radicalism in the country.

The agency chief expressed hope that Indonesia’s youth will not involve themselves in any form of terrorist activities resulting from radicalization.

 (Writer: Haryanti Puspa Sari, Tsarina Maharani | Editor: Kristian Erdianto, Bayu Galih) 


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