Christians condemned the multiple suicide bombings that targeted three churches and other buildings in Surabaya, Indonesia’s second largest city. Christian leaders called for unity after a coordinated attack left many people dead and many others injured, reports Union of Catholic Asian News.
Police authorities reported that early on May 13, 2018, as worshipers were going to church for Sunday services, two teenage siblings carried out the first explosion at the Santa Maria Catholic church. Then, the mother with her two daughters aged 12 and nine bombed the GKI Diponegoro church. The last bombing was perpetrated by the father of the family. He drove a car bomb into the Surabaya Central Pentecost Church.
The explosions killed at least 14 worshipers, and injured more than 40. On the same day, police revealed that they detonated four bombs discovered in the house of the militant family.
Another blast occurred later that day in a low-cost apartment building, killing three people. The Sunday bombings marked the deadliest terrorist attack in Indonesia since the Bali island resort bombing in 2005 which left over 23 people dead.
Isis claimed responsibility for the attacks.
President Joko Widodo condemned the bombings as “The act of cowards, undignified and barbaric.” He vowed to issue a regulation should the parliament fail to pass the new anti-terror bill into law, reports Reuters.
Denouncing the terror attacks, Father Agustinus Ulahayanan of the Commission for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairscalled called on Catholics and other Christians to unite and be vigilant.
“We must not be afraid. We must tighten security,” he said.
Meantime, the United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, issued a statement denouncing the bombings, reports Premier.
According to Guterres’ spokesman, “He is appalled at reports that children were used to participate in the attacks. The Secretary-General expresses his condolences to the families of the victims and wishes a swift recovery to those injured.”