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Indonesia Church Rocked by Explosion on Palm Sunday

Mohammad Ramadhan Pomanto, the mayor of Makassar, a multifaith port city of about 1.5 million people on the island of Sulawesi, told Metro TV that body parts were found as far as 200 meters away. He said no churchgoers had been killed.

Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation, has a significant Christian minority. In recent years, Southeast Asian affiliates of the Islamic State have targeted Christian places of worship there and in the mostly Catholic Philippines.

In 2018, three Christian churches were bombed in Surabaya, the second-largest city in Indonesia, leaving a dozen bystanders dead. The suicide bombers were a married couple and their four children. Within days, members of two other families also set off bombs in Surabaya, blowing themselves up.

Last year, a Roman Catholic cathedral was bombed for the third time on the island of Jolo in the southern Philippines, killing at least 14 people. As with the Surabaya bombings, a local affiliate of the Islamic State claimed responsibility for that strike. A 2019 suicide attack on the same cathedral, which killed more than 20 people, was carried out by an Indonesian couple.


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