Indonesia said yesterday it would probably strengthen anti-terrorism regulations to prevent attacks such as last week's bomb blast at a Jakarta hotel, as the US ambassador warned more attempts at attacks were likely. \nChief security minister Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono told reporters the Cabinet would debate the issue tomorrow, but added the world's most populous Muslim nation would not copy draconian security laws used by its neighbors. \nAnti-terrorism regulations were introduced in the wake of last October's Bali bombings that killed 202 people, mostly foreigners, but are not as far reaching as laws used in Singapore and Malaysia. \nAuthorities have blamed the Bali and hotel bombings as well as others over the past year on militant Muslims linked to the regional Jemaah Islamiah group and Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda. \n"The main idea of the government is to revise the current law. Particularly, we will study whether the current regulation is accommodating enough or not," Yudhoyono told reporters. \nHowever, the government has "no thought" to "plagiarize the ISA [internal security acts] of Singapore and Malaysia." \n"The government is not as stupid as that, because our conditions are different, the substance is different," he said. \nThere have been calls by some officials for Indonesia to follow the Singapore and Malaysian examples of draconian internal security laws since the Aug. 5 bombing at the JW Marriott Hotel in Jakarta, which killed 12 people and wounded up to 150. \nBut civil rights groups and some legislators have responded angrily to suggestions the government might seek to revive laws similar to those used by former autocrat Suharto during his 32 years of iron rule that ended in 1998. \nUS envoy to Jakarta Ralph Boyce said he had warned Americans to expect more attempts at terror attacks. \nIn remarks to reporters who asked him about a meeting of US citizens in the heavily guarded embassy complex earlier, Boyce said a theme of his comments was that "we believe it likely there will be further attempts" by militants at such attacks. \nHe said he also suggested to those at the gathering that if they left the meeting more concerned or even more frightened than when they came they would have got the message. \nThe meeting itself was off the record to the media. \nWashington has already issued several warnings, most recently on August 8, of terrorist threats in Indonesia, and said places where Americans and other foreigners gather or reside are potential targets. \nWhile all but one of those who died in the Aug. 5 Marriott attack were Indonesians, the hotel was viewed as a Western symbol, and had been used by the US embassy for various events. \nAustralia issued a warning yesterday for its citizens to avoid all international hotels in Jakarta after new intelligence found the capital could be under threat of further attacks.
A new state-produced musical set in Xinjiang inspired by Hollywood blockbuster La La Land has hit China’s cinemas, portraying a rural idyll of ethnic cohesion devoid of repression, mass surveillance and even the Islam of its majority Uighur population. China is on an elaborate public relations offensive to rebrand the region where the US says “genocide” has been inflicted on the Uighurs and other Muslim minorities. As allegations of slavery and forced labor inside Xinjiang’s cotton industry draw renewed global attention, inside China, Beijing is curating a very different narrative for the troubled region. Rap songs, photographic exhibitions and a musical — The
SUBMERGED 6,500M: The 115m-long ship was sunk on Oct. 25, 1944, in the Battle of Leyte Gulf as the US fought to recover the Philippines from Japanese occupation A US Navy destroyer sunk during World War II and lying nearly 6,500m below sea level off the coast of the Philippines has been reached in the world’s deepest shipwreck dive, a US exploration team said. A crewed submersible filmed, photographed and surveyed the wreckage of the USS Johnston off the coast of Samar Island during two eight-hour dives completed late last month, Texas-based undersea technology company Caladan Oceanic said. The 115m-long ship was sunk on Oct. 25, 1944, during the Battle of Leyte Gulf as US forces fought to recover the Philippines, then a US colony, from Japanese occupation. Its location in
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‘VOSTOK 1’: The first flight attempt is planned to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the first space flight by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin NASA’s Ingenuity mini-helicopter has survived its first night alone on the frigid surface of Mars, the US space agency said, hailing it as “a major milestone” for the tiny craft as it prepares for its first flight. The ultra-light aircraft was dropped on the surface on Saturday after detaching from the belly of the Perseverance rover, which touched down on Feb. 18. Detached from the Perseverance, Ingenuity had to rely on its own solar-powered battery to run a vital heater to protect its unshielded electrical components from freezing and cracking during the bitter Martian night, where temperatures can plunge as low as