Jan 5, 2005

Thousands of Mujahidin on the way to Aceh

This evening at maghrib prayers throughout Java calls went out for "volunteers" to go to Aceh to provide humanitarian services and "spiritual guidance" for those affected by the earthquake and tsunami. Volunteers from Solo, Kendal, Bogor, Cirebon, Majalengka, Pekalongan and Yogyakarta have answered the call and are being transported in chartered buses to Jakarta. At least 77 members of (JI) departed Tuesday (4/1/05) from Yogyakarta to Jakarta in two chartered buses.

Islamic militancy groups are angry and claiming that Jakarta has refused to allow the charter of private aircraft from Jakarta into Banda Aceh at the request of the Americans and Australians and thus has prevented Indonesians from from providing for their own humanitarian efforts. (According to my sources, this is true. To avoid conflict, high level requests have been made to do all possible to thwart and delay the arrival of militant groups)

Jemaah Islamiah (JI) and Islamic Defenders' Front (FPI) are working to coordinate their efforts and work together - according to sources individuals from Laksar Jihad with their connections to the Indonesian military have requested logistics assistance and so far been refused.

The groups are now in discussions with Gerakan Acheh Merdeka (GAM) with regards to coordinating their "relief" efforts as hundreds of individual members of both JI and FPI and other groups arrived into Medan this evening.

More to come...

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