2016 Movida Bar grenade attack
|2016 Movida Bar grenade attack|
|Part of Spillover of the Syrian Civil War|
|Location||Puchong, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia|
28 June 2016 |
02:15AM MST (UTC+08:00)
|Perpetrators||Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant|
Imam Wahyudin Karjono|
Number of participants
On 28 June 2016, a bar located in the suburb of Kuala Lumpur was attacked by two attackers who threw a grenade into the bar while 20 customers were watching the UEFA Euro 2016 match between Italy and Spain. The attack injured eight people, including one foreigner from China. The attackers left the scene with their motorcycle after the incident but were subsequently arrested following a series of investigation. The attack was described as the first ever Islamic terrorism to the country perpetrated by the Malaysian members of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
Although Malaysia is located far from the major conflicts in the Muslim world of Middle East, the growing Islamic extremist, religious bigotry as well with the religion politicisation in the country, had led to radicalism. In addition to there is no condemnation from the Malaysian government itself for the radical actions of Malaysian IS supporters. Until 2015, there have been around 200 Malaysian Muslims who had joined the Islamic State (IS) in its fight in the Syrian Civil War and Iraqi Civil War to establish a modern Islamic caliphate. Many of this returnees has been brainwashed by their leaders in Syria and Iraq to fight their own countrymen who did not shared the same ideologies with their although if they are Muslims too. Following the rise of extremism among Malaysian Muslims which have since threatening the government and country, the authorities have arrest many of the IS followers and blocking their entrance to the country as well for them to go to Syria, of which this is believed to be the main cause many of the Malaysian IS members and supporters who reside in the country decide to rebel against their own country and government.
Shortly after the attack, the deputy police chief of Selangor state Abdul Rahim Jaafar ruled out the possibility of terrorist attack, and said the cause was due to business rivalry, revenge, or a target killing as similar attack was happened in 2014 when a man was killed and 13 others injured after a grenade exploded outside a pub in Kuala Lumpur that linked to gambling kingpin.
According to a Facebook post released shortly after the incident, the director of the bar Roger Hew claimed preliminary investigations revealed that the incident caused by "an Indian couple" that was targeted by another two Indian men due to personal matters. However, according to Sin Chew Daily who posted a screenshot of a Facebook post under the account "Abu Hamzah Al-Fateh" (the Facebook account is known to be associated with a Malaysian man fighting for the IS in Syria, although the post is not publicly visible). The owner of the account reportedly wrote that two members of "junud khilafah wilayah milazia" [sic] had targeted a nightclub full of "heathens" who had not respected the Muslim holy month of Ramadan with "immoral acts". The user urge other Muslims to stay away from places like this to avoid becoming targets. The IS claim were also supported with a statement issued by an ISIS platform monitored by the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore.
On 4 July, Malaysia's Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Khalid Abu Bakar finally confirmed that the attack was perpetrated by Malaysian IS members. The outcome was met with shocked and anger by many Malaysians. Following more investigation been done, around 15 people (from different states of Perlis, Selangor, Perak, Kedah, Penang and Sabah) have been arrested including two police officers with many of them are related to IS, while two people that are suspected for throwing the grenade were also arrested. Malaysia's IGP said the attack was directed by a Malaysian residing in Syria named Muhamad Wanndy Mohamad Jedi (nom de guerre Abu Hamzah) who direct his men to launch attacks in their home country against senior leaders in the government and the Royal Malaysia Police, as well as judges because they trying to block militant activity. Wanndy also reportedly have warned that there will be more attacks to come although this was denied by most experts as their group did not have resources to launch a bigger attack. However, all these claims were denied by Wanndy itself, saying that:
|“||Those are serious allegations to make me as scapegoats. They (police) are cooking up stories as revenge towards me and manipulating facts of the arrests to divert the people’s attention from Malaysia’s current issues, which are getting worse. Those arrested are mere supporters, who expressed support for the Islamic caliphate, and they have never received instructions from me to launch attacks on leaders and judges, as claimed by the IGP.||”|
The two perpetrators who threw the grenade that have been caught identified as:
- Imam Wahyudin Karjono of Puchong, Selangor
- Jonius Ondie @ Jahali of Kota Marudu, Sabah
Both suspects have admitted to their charges of attempting to murder eight people and having a grenade and also pleaded guilty to other eight charges. Their charges including a long-term jail up to 30-years for their murder attempt and another 14 years jail together with caning (rotan) for their possession of explosive as well another 30 years jail or provides for life imprisonment for becoming a member and supporting terrorist activities. Preliminary investigation revealed they obtained the grenade from a neighbouring country.
Another two that are believed to be involved in the planning of attack are identified as:
- Md Saifuddin Muji of Rengit, Johor
- Jasanizam Rosni of Batu Pahat, Johor
Following the attack, the Royal Malaysia Police and Malaysian Army have start to beefing security to prevent more attacks in the future. US State Department has plan to set up a data centre in Malaysia following the attack to curb further IS propaganda.
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