Sun, 02 Mar 2003

Ba'asyir strikes back

INDONESIA: The legal team of Abu Bakar Ba'asyir, a Muslim cleric allegedly linked to terrorism, in a snap meeting here on Saturday questioned the recent filing of treason charges against its client, Indosiar private television station reported.

The chairman of the legal team, Adnan Buyung Nasution, said Ba'asyir had previously been charged with plotting to assassinate Megawati Soekarnoputri in 1999 and masterminding a series of bombing in the Christmas's Eve in 2000. "Therefore, the team has prepared some measures in connection with the new charges," he said.

Adnan said that the team would, among other things, sue the prosecutor's office for arresting its client and file for a judicial review of the verdict of a previous suit, in which Ba'asyir's arrest was deemed legal.

The team would sue National Police chief Gen. Da'i Bachtiar and the National Commission on Human Rights for voicing an inappropriate opinion about Ba'asyir through the mass media. -- JP