Indonesia’s first female would-be suicide bomber jailed

Indonesian militant Dian Yulia Novi, center, is flanked by her husband Nur Solihin, right, and her recruiter Tutin as they sit on the defendant’s bench during their trial hearing at East Jakarta District Court in Jakarta, Indonesia, on August 23, 2017. (AP)
Updated 28 August 2017

Indonesia’s first female would-be suicide bomber jailed

JAKARTA: An Indonesian woman has been sentenced to seven-and-a-half years jail for her involvement in an Daesh-inspired plot to carry out a suicide bomb attack on the presidential palace in Jakarta, her lawyer said Monday.
Dian Yulia Novi was arrested at her boarding house with a three-kilogram bomb encased in a pressure cooker the night before the planned attack on the palace in December.
Novi, a 28-year-old former migrant worker who is nine months pregnant, was found guilty of committing an act of terrorism by the East Jakarta District Court on Friday, her lawyer confirmed to AFP.
“The judges said what she had committed was counterproductive with the government’s efforts to eradicate terrorism and that it has caused public unrest,” lawyer Kamsi, who like many Indonesians goes by only one name, said.
It is the first time a woman has been convicted over a suicide bomb plot in Indonesia and highlights the more active role women are taking in violent extremism.
Novi and her husband were among five militants detained over the planned attack last year.
Another woman alleged to have recruited Novi, named Tutin Sugiarti, was sentenced to three-and-half years in prison on Friday, Kamsi said.
Police believe the group was strongly linked to Bahrun Naim, a leading Indonesian militant currently fighting with the Daesh group in Syria.
Many from Indonesia — which has long struggled with Islamic militancy — have flocked to join Daesh in the Middle East, while radicals in the country have pledged allegiance to the group and attacks and plots have been linked to the jihadists.
Indonesian women — often radicalized on social media — are taking on a more active role in violent extremism, according to recent report from the Jakarta-based Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict.
Kamsi said judges delivered the verdict earlier than expected because Novi was pregnant. She would not file an appeal.


WHO warns ‘too early to ease up’ from COVID-19 lockdowns in Europe

Updated 11 min 57 sec ago

WHO warns ‘too early to ease up’ from COVID-19 lockdowns in Europe

  • ‘We need to be patient, it will take time to vaccinate’
  • ‘Pushing transmission down requires a sustained, consistent effort’

GENEVA: The World Health Organization’s European director Hans Kluge said on Thursday COVID-19 transmission rates in Europe remained too high, putting health services under severe strain, and therefore it was “too early to ease up.”
“We need to be patient, it will take time to vaccinate,” he told an online briefing. “We have learned harsh lessons — opening and closing, and reopening (societies) rapidly is a poor strategy” in seeking to curb coronavirus contagion, he said.
“Transmission rates across Europe are still very high, impacting health systems and straining services, making it too early to ease up,” Kluge said. “Pushing transmission down requires a sustained, consistent effort. Bear in mind that just over 3 percent of people in the region have had a confirmed COVID-19 infection. Areas hit badly once can be hit again.”
Kluge said a total of 35 countries in Europe had launched vaccination programs with 25 million does administered so far.
“These vaccines have shown the efficacy and safety we all hoped they would...This monumental undertaking will release pressure on our health systems and undoubtedly save lives.”
He said continued high rates of transmission and emerging variants of the virus made it urgent to vaccinate priority groups, but said the rate of vaccine production and distribution was not yet meeting expectations.
“This paradox, where communities sense an end is in sight with the vaccine but, at the same time, are called to adhere to restrictive measures in the face of a new threat, is causing tension, angst, fatigue, and confusion. This is completely understandable in these circumstances.”