Despite the large number of businesspeople including expatriates present when bombs went off in two Jakarta hotels on Friday, the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry said on Tuesday that it did not believe their presence was the inspiration for the attacks. Mohamad S. Hidayat, the chairman of the chamber, also known as Kadin, said he wanted to stress that we “do not think the group of executive businesspeople meeting on Friday [at one of the hotels] were targeted” by the terrorists. “What was targeted on Friday morning was an international hotel frequented by all types of people, from all sorts of nations and races.” Hidayat also told a news conference that “after Friday’s bombings we were immediately in contact with a number of chambers of commerce overseas and their reactions [toward Indonesia] remain positive.” “We didn’t try to force our views on them,” he said. “We listened to them and allowed them to express what they think, and what we are conveying today are their views.” Jakarta Governor Fauzi Bowo told the same news conference that there were no indications of any long-term impacts on the economy from the attacks. “There will be a bit of turbulence in the tourism sector, but I am confident it will not be for long,” Fauzi said.
Source: Jakarta Globe, 22 July 09, p. section A3