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Indonesia trial of Jemaah Islamiyah terror group leader begins

[JURIST] The alleged head of Southeast Asian terror group Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) [CFR backgrounder; JURIST news archive] went to trial in Indonesia Monday. Zarkasih [BBC profile] is charged with training and equipping JI members as well as conspiracy to commit terrorism. He could face the death penalty if convicted. BBC News has more.

JI was responsible for the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings [GlobalSecurity backgrounder], in which 202 people died, as well as other terror attacks across Asia. Zarkasih and fellow JT ringleader Abu Dujana [BBC profile], who was was arrested [JURIST report] in June, are believed to have protected Malaysian fugitive Noordin Top, who was connected to the 2002 bombings. JI was also responsible for the 2004 bombing of the US embassy in Jakarta and a series of 2005 Bali bombings [Wikipedia backgrounders].

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