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Indonesia fears acts of terror

November 19, 2006

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JAKARTA, Nov 18: Acts of terrorism during US President George Bush's visit on Nov 20 are possible because militants remain at large, the chief of Indonesia's intelligence agency said on Saturday.

Mr Bush will stop in the world's most populous Muslim country for a few hours on Sunday to meet President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a regional ally in the `war on terrorism’.

Indonesia has arrested hundreds of suspected militants since a bombing on the resort island of Bali killed 202 people four years ago.

“As long as all of Noordin Top's group have not been captured of course the threat is still present, but whether it is big or small we are still calculating,” intelligence chief Syamsir Siregar told reporters, referring to one of the best-known fugitives.

Intelligence officials and police have said Malaysian national Top was a key planner behind the Bali blasts and other attacks aimed at western-linked targets in Indonesia.

Siregar was speaking after a news conference with other security officials, who declined to spell out how many police and soldiers would be on hand in Bogor, the site of Bush's visit.

Local media have reported numbers ranging close to 20,000, and much of Bogor — a scenic town 50kms south of Jakarta in foothills of volcanic peaks -- is expected to be locked down for the visit.—Reuters