With Operation Tinombala being successful over the past year, Brig. Gen. Rudy Sufahriadi said operation will resume in 2017 to completely wipe out the terrorist group East Indonesia Muhajidin (MIT).
Over the New Year weekend, police authorities reported that its mission to eliminate the terrorist group MIT in Poso, Central Sulawesi, has so far been successful the past year. They will however extend their operation to capture the remaining members of the rebel organization.
Brig. Gen. Rudy Sufahriadi, commander of Operation Tinombala, told the media the highlights of the joint police-military operation, one of which was the death of Santoso, the MIT leader and named as Indonesia’s most wanted terrorist for years. Thirty-two other members of the radical group were neutralized by Tinombala, the operation commander added.
Sufahriadi explained that ten of the members were captured alive during the operation, twenty were killed in a firefight, while two others were found dead.
Sufahriadi, who is also Central Sulawesi Police chief, said that while they were successful in neutralizing Santoso, the operation will resume in 2017.
Operation Tinombala was officially organized in 2015. Its failure to capture Santoso over the past few years since then had resulted in having the operation extended several times. With Santoso’s capture and death in July of 2016, plans were outlined to have the mission terminated.
The police however explained Tinombala is still necessary to capture the remaining members of the MIT, which is now being led by Ali Kalora.
At least nineteen members of the Operation Tinombala team have died during firefights with MIT encounters or through illness.
Image credit: MediaIndonesia