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06/26/2020 Indonesia (International Christian Concern) – The terrorist militants in Indonesia have not slowed down their recruitment, even with the ongoing pandemic.  With that, Indonesia’s counter-terrorism chief is seeking to increase the budget for the National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT), so it can expand its staff to handle the spread of terrorism propaganda online and offline during COVID-19. The BNPT has proposed new funding for 2021 by USD$38.9 million.

The counter-terrorism chief will also appoint three new deputies to make the BNPT more active, making six overall deputies. According to Benar News, each one is in charge of overseeing policy systems, national preparedness, deradicalization, law enforcement and monitoring, and international cooperation; this is direly needed as the world continues to face terrorism threat.

Based on security analysts Zachary Abuza and Alif Satria’s article in the Diplomat, three militant groups in Indonesia – Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), Eastern Indonesia Mujahidin (MIT) and Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) have been taking advantage of the pandemic to expand influence or plan out attacks.

Addressing militant terrorists in Indonesia also could benefit churches. Terrorists often target churches as Christians are considered “kafir,” which means “infidel.” Increasing security to prevent possible attacks protects churches that could be vulnerable to terrorist acts.

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