Bali's Chief of Police, Ir. Jen. Made Mangku Pastika, has called on all parties to remain calm and not be provoked by a current campaign of SMS – Short Messaging Service being broadcast to mobile phone users across the island.
The messages – calling for immediate execution of the three Bali Bombers held on death row and attempting to instigate racial and ethnic unrest – have the potential to undermine Bali's cherished reputation for religious tolerance. "Listen to me," Chief Pastika warned during an October 18th press conference, "there are people circulating rumors and slander via SMS in order to disrupt Bali. This is a terror tactic; Bali must preserve its good order!"
Efforts by the police to track down provocateurs using the telephone service are frustrated by the open access of prep-paid phone cards in Indonesia making it almost impossible to track the source of the nefarious messages.
Bali Remains Safe
Calling on the residents of Bali to unite in their efforts to frustrate provocateurs, Chief Pastika urge all minority groups on the island to accept his personal guarantee that the people of Bali would never take anarchic steps against other ethnic groups living on the island. During the press conference, Bali's top law enforcement officer underlined that the Balinese are known for their courtesy and aversion to violence and that the peace prevailing between religious groups in Bali is praised and valued the world over.
Bali Bombers on Death Row
Acknowledging the anger felt by many in Bali at the second wave of terrorist attacks, Pastika urged the public not to be led away by their emotions and participate in demonstrations calling for the rapid execution of the three convicted Bali bombers. Saying that feelings of revenge can often form the basis for improper and illegal actions, Chief Pastika urged the public to allow the legal process leading to the execution of the terrorist trio to run its course.
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