Perpetrators of Jakarta bombings carried firearms

Perpetrators of Jakarta bombings carried firearms

Police guard a post blast in the surrounding area Sarinah, Jalan MH Thamrin, Jakarta, Thursday (Jan. 1, 2016). (ANTARANews/Arindra Meodia)

He looked like an immigrant having dark skin, was not too tall, and still young."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The perpetrators behind the bomb blasts at the police check post and Starbucks Cofffee cafe near the Sarinah departmental store at the MH Thamrin Boulevard in Central Jakarta were reportedly unmasked and carrying firearms.

"They were still young and were carrying FN pistols and backpacks," a witness named Ruli stated here on Thursday before being evacuated from the scene.

The perpetrator, who carried out the shooting, was a man wearing a short-sleeved shirt, while the others wore long-sleeved shirts and entered the cafe that was targeted in the bomb attack.

At first, Ruli thought that the shock wave he felt from the explosion was that of an earthquake, but after going downstairs, he witnessed the blast and a person being thrown out of the cafe due to the impact of the explosion.

Another witness said there were three suicide bombers who blew themselves up near a police check post at the Jakarta Theatre Building on the MH Thamrin Boulevard.

Tri Feranto, an eye witness who is a security officer at Mandiri Bank, claimed that the first and second explosions occurred at the Starbucks cafe at 10:35 a.m. local time.

The third explosion at a police check post was carried out by the three suicide bombers, in which a policeman was injured.

After the third explosion, a series of shootings took place that targeted the police, and two officers were injured during the gunfight.

Feranto claimed to have seen the face of the perpetrator who passed in front of him.

"He looked like an immigrant having dark skin, was not too tall, and still young," he explained.

Press attache of the French Cultural Agency (IFI) Dwi Setyowati whose office is near the bombing sites pointed out that he heard five explosions and gunshots.

"All staff members at the IFI and French Embassy are prohibited from going outside right now," she added.

The buildings and shops along the Thamrin Boulevard have been cordoned off. Some helicopters are conducting aerial monitoring of the situation.

(Reporting by Aubrey Kandelila/Uu.INE/KR-BSR/F001)