Restaurants were warned a month before attack, Bali officer

Bali beach restaurants attacked by terrorists on Saturday were warned more than a month earlier they might be targeted after a half ready bomb was discovered at a nearby hotel, but village leaders delayed plans to bolster security, an official said.

Cafes along Jimbaran Bay were told in August to station guards and to check bags and cars entering the area, but the village decided to wait until after a Hindu holiday celebrated on the resort island Wednesday four days after the deadly Oct. 1 attacks by three suicide bombers, police Capt. D. Dharmada told The Associated Press.

"If those measures had been implemented, this attack probably wouldn't have happened," he said. "I'm disappointed. Security is very important and the loss here is so big. It's a big sacrifice."

Dharmada added that police had stepped up security, but there was a limited number of officers, so hotels and restaurants including 28 cafes in the area were told to help out.

"We gathered all their security chiefs and briefed them about ways to prepare."

In general, most of the higher-end hotels on the resort island have more extensive security than the beach-front restaurant and cafes.

The al-Qaida-linked Jemaah Islamiyah terror group is suspected in the near-simultaneous bombings on three crowded restaurants two on Jimbaran beach and another in the nearby tourist area of Kuta that killed 22 people, including the bombers, and wounded more than 100.

Police have announced few breaks in the investigation, though DNA samples from several suspected family members of the suicide bombers whose severed heads were found near the blast sites, reports the AP.


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