JAKARTA, Indonesia – Police found a box full of bombs in central Indonesia after one of the explosives accidentally detonated, but refused to speculate whether the cache was intended for terrorist attacks or dynamite fishing.
"We are investigating," Lt. Col. Ari Subiyanto, a senior police official in East Java province, said Thursday after 43 homemade bombs were discovered in a house in the city of Pasuruan. "We don't know yet what they were for."
The man who allegedly assembled the bombs, identified only as Jordan, was seriously wounded when one accidentally detonated late Wednesday, ripping off his left hand and burning his face, chest and legs, said Subiyanto.
Though the man was a fisherman, Subiyanto said the explosives — along with sulfur residue, circuits and batteries — were not the type usually used by fisherman in the area.
He said police were searching for the man's wife and two children, who fled the scene immediately after the blast.
National police in the capital Jakarta said they were waiting for more information from East Java before commenting, but spokesman Brig. Gen. Anton Bachrul Alam said initial indications were that the detonated bomb was a high-intensity explosive.
"The house was badly damaged," he said, refusing to elaborate. Witnesses said a portion of the roof collapsed and several interior walls crumbled.
Indonesia has been hit by a series of terrorist attacks in recent years blamed on the Al Qaeda- linked militant network Jemaah Islamiyah, including bombings on the resort island of Bali in 2002 and 2005 that together killed 222.