RealNews

Bashir Weeps as He Denies Plotting to Kill Megawati

Abu Bakar Bashir, the radical Islamic cleric accused of heading an al-Qaeda-linked terrorist network in Asia, wept yesterday as he accused the Indonesian Government of framing him on charges of treason and plotting to assassinate its president. Tears welling, he denied any wrongdoing and said authorities in Singapore and Malaysia had tortured witnesses to give evidence against him. Bashir’s emotional outburst contrasted with his previous defiant behaviour and cocky attitude during the trial against him, which he says is fuelled by false evidence from the US and Israel. Bashir is allegedly the spiritual head of Jemaah Islamiah (JI), which is blamed for a string of atrocities in South-East Asia, including last October’s Bali bombing and this month’s suicide attack on the Marriott hotel in Jakarta. Prosecutors say that under his leadership JI plotted to kill President Megawati Soekarnoputri with the wider aim of establishing an Islamic state in Indonesia. Full Story

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