Saturday, July 18, 2009

Bombing at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel and the Marriott Hotel

Explosions at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel and the Marriott Hotel in central Jakarta




Deadly blasts hit Jakarta hotels - Explosions have hit two luxury hotels in the Indonesian capital Jakarta, killing at least six people, including foreigners, and injuring a number of others. "There were explosions heard from two separate places, one the JW Marriott, the other in the Ritz Carlton. We are still trying to check because right now we are still helping the victims," South Jakarta Police Chief Firman Santyabudi told Indonesian Metro TV. Reports say one Australian has been slightly injured. The first explosion is reported to have happened at the JW Marriott hotel in central Jakarta just a few blocks away from the Australian embassy at about 8.00am this morning (local time). Later there was reportedly another explosion on the first floor of the Ritz Carlton hotel, directly opposite, with windows being blown out of the hotel's restaurant. "I heard two sounds like 'boom, boom' coming from the Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton. Then I saw people running out," security guard Eko Susanto told AFP. Police have sealed off the area near the Ritz-Carlton and the JW Marriott, an AFP correspondent said. Witness Intan told TV One one of the explosions wrecked the lobby of the Plaza Mutiara building. "I was having breakfast on level 16, I heard an explosion and went down to the first floor and it was a mess. I saw foreigners all bloody, about three to five of them, badly wounded," she said. "I saw some people being carried into a Mercedes. There was a lot of them in there, they were having trouble closing the doors," a witness, who gave her name as Mery, told ElShinta. DFAT says officials in Jakarta are urgently trying to identify if any Australians have been injured in the explosions. It says anyone with concern for family and friends in the area should first try to contact them directly before calling the Department's consular emergency centre. The number is 1300 555 135. The explosions come two weeks after presidential elections in Indonesia.

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