Twin bombings ripped through the J.W. Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta, Indonesia on Friday morning.
The explosions were timed to go off simultaneously, with one bomb going off in the Restaurant Syailendra in the Marriott hotel’s basement at 7.45 am, just 2 minutes after which there was another explosion in the Ritz-Carlton’s Airlangga restaurant. Both hotels are located adjacent to each other in an upscale business district in Jakarta.
As of now, 9 (8) people have been reported killed and 50 injured in the bombings, with at least 14 foreigners included in the count. 4 foreigners are reported to be killed, but no nationality or identification has been specified as yet. Apparently the force of the Marriott bomb was so great that the explosion, which went off in the basement, shattered glass on the third floor.
Initial statements from law enforcement officials suggest signs of suicide bombings, but it’s not official yet and investigations are ongoing.
Update 1: July 17, 2009 - 8 Americans among those injured. President Obama condems bombings and offers US help to Indonesia. Marriott International, which owns both the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton brands, said in a statement that guests were evacuated to nearby hotels and that both hotels sustained damage, but it does not appear to be structural.