Police: DNA confirms Noordin dead

An undated photo of terror suspect Noordin Mohamad Top obtained from police in Jakarta in November 2003
Indonesian police say they have DNA evidence identifying the man they killed this week as Noordin Top, the nation’s most-wanted terror suspect.

“We have matched this Malaysian man’s DNA against his family and it’s 100 percent match,” Nanan Soekarna, a national police representative said Saturday. The police will coordinate with Malaysian authorities to return the body to his country. Noordin was killed in a raid in Central Java early Thursday morning, authorities said. Indonesian authorities had already said they identified the body by fingerprints. Watch how Noordin’s identity was established Police learned of Noordin’s whereabouts after apprehending and interrogating two terror suspects on Wednesday. Anti-terror forces launched their raid in the Kepok Sari neighborhood of Surakarta in central Java around midnight. It ended after a five-hour standoff capped by a firefight. Authorities had hunted for Noordin for years, accusing him of involvement in July’s twin suicide bombings at the Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta, the 2002 Bali nightclub bombing and attacks on the same Marriott hotel in Jakarta in 2003, as well as the Australian embassy in 2004.

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Authorities initially thought Noordin was killed during an 18-hour raid by police last month in Central Java, but DNA evidence showed it was someone else. Noordin was one of four people killed in the raid this week, authorities said. Also killed in the raid were two of Noordin’s key associates, Urwa and Aryo Sudarso, and the owner of the home where the standoff took place. Urwa was convicted in the 2004 bombing of the Australian embassy but was later released on probation. Aryo Sudarso was an apprentice of Azahari bin Husin, believed to be one of the masterminds behind the Bali bombings in 2002 and 2005. Husin died in a shootout with security forces four years ago in East Java. Three others were arrested.

“We found several guns, some grenades and eight bags of explosive materials,” said Nanan Soekarna, the police spokesman. A handful of suspects have been on the run since the July bombings, which were carried out by members of a splinter group of the militant organization Jemaah Islamiyah, which has ties to al Qaeda.