JAKARTA, Indonesia – This month's suicide bombings on Indonesia's (search) island are a reminder that Muslim nations must unite against extremists "who are distorting the teachings of Islam," Jordan's King Abdullah II (search) said Wednesday.
Islamic militants have launched several attacks in Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation, and in Jordan (search) in recent years.
Abdullah made his remarks after meeting with Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (search). Both leaders are heralded in the West for being champions of religious moderation.
"We reaffirmed the importance of working together to defeat the scourge of terrorism that Indonesia and Jordan have suffered," Abdullah told reporters at a news conference. "The malicious attacks in Bali are a reminder that we need to unite in the struggle to defeat ignorant extremists who distort the teaching of Islam."
The Oct. 1 bombings on three crowded restaurants on the resort island killed 23 people, including the three attackers. They have been blamed on the Al Qaeda (search) linked Jemaah Islamiyah terror network, which is also accused in three other attacks in Indonesia since 2002.
Yudhoyono said that Indonesia (search) was working to empower liberal Islamic leaders to deprive militants of support, as well as stepping up police and intelligence efforts to smash their networks.
"We want to maintain the moderate forces of our social life," Yudhoyono said. "We are doing this, but it is an unfinished agenda."
More than 80 percent of Indonesia's 220 million people are Muslims. Most practice a broadly tolerant version of the faith tinged with remnants of Hindu (search) and animist rituals, which predate Islam in the archipelago.