Jakarta: Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono sent a message of defiance on Friday to Islamist extremists, saying Indonesia would not be defeated by terrorism after police uncovered a plot to assassinate him.
In an address to the nation ahead of Independence Day on Monday, the ex-general called on all Indonesians to remain vigilant against extremists blamed for a series of attacks including last month's hotel blasts in Jakarta.
Police hunting Islamist fanatic Noordin Mohammed Top, who allegedly ordered the July 17 suicide attacks on the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels, said this week they had killed three men involved in the assassination plot.
"In this planned terrorist attack there is a new phenomenon which is to aim terrorist action directly at our country, including a plan to assassinate the head of state," Yudhoyono said.
"I want to stress that our country cannot be defeated in the fight against terrorism."
Two suicide bombers believed to be part of Noordin's network killed seven people, mostly foreigners, at the Marriott and Ritz-Carlton in downtown Jakarta, the first attack of its kind in Indonesia since 2005.
Police investigating the blasts have killed three others who were allegedly planning to detonate a truck bomb at Yudhoyono's principle residence near Bogor, south of Jakarta, around Independence Day.
First Published: Friday, August 14, 2009, 14:06