Bomb explodes at Hindu temple on Indonesian island

A small bomb exploded Friday outside a Hindu temple on an Indonesian island that has been plagued by religious violence, seriously wounding a man who was guarding the compound, police said.

The blast on the outskirts of Poso, a coastal town on Sulawesi island, was caused by a low-intensity bomb that was placed in the home of the temple's guard, said Poso's deputy police chief, Maj. Andreas Wayan.

It detonated when the 40-year-old man, Nengah Sugiarta, opened the door, causing the roof and wooden walls to collapse, he said.

"Whoever did this wanted to create panic and spread terror here in Poso," Wayan said, adding that police found black powder, nails, shrapnel and a battery at the scene, indicating the bomb was homemade.

Hundreds of onlookers gathered around the temple after the blast, which riddled Sugiarta's legs and waist with shrapnel and wood. The Hindu man, who has been the temple's guard for 15 years, was taken to a nearby hospital.

Some 3,000 security personnel have been deployed to the region, where Muslim-Christian clashes in 2001-2002 left more than 1,000 dead, following a resurgence of violence several months ago.

Most of the victims in the latest attacks, including market bombings and the beheadings of three school girls, have been Christian.

Wayan said it was too early to say who was behind Friday's attack, the first to target Hindus in Poso, a city 1,600 kilometers (1,000 miles) northeast of Jakarta.

Police questioned three residents who were near the temple at the time of the blast, he said, providing no other details, reports the AP.

I.L.

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Author`s name: Editorial Team