Suspected Bali bomber Dulmatin shot dead

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Indonesia's president said a top-ranked Southeast Asian militant wanted for planning the 2002 Bali bombings was identified as the man shot dead by police in a raid on the island of Java.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono told officials in a speech in the Australian capital, Canberra, today that suspected Jemaah Islamiyah leader Dulmatin was the man shot dead in a raid at an internet cafe southwest of Jakarta on Tuesday.

Dulmatin was wanted for the suicide bombings that tore through two Bali nightclubs popular with Westerners, killing 202 people in Indonesia's deadliest terrorist attack.

"Today we can announce to you that after a successful police raid against the terrorist hiding out in Jakarta yesterday that we can confirm that one of those that were killed was Mr Dulmatin, one of the top Southeast Asian terrorists that we've been looking for," Mr Yudhoyono said in a luncheon speech in Parliament House.

Eliminating the alleged master bomb maker of the Jemaah Islamiyah militant group, a Southeast Asian offshoot of al Qaida, will be seen as a major achievement for Indonesian security forces ahead of President Barack Obama's first visit to the country from March 20-22.

Terrorism in the region will be a major focus of talks.

It was not immediately clear if anyone is eligible for a 10 million US dollar reward offered by the US government for Dulmatin's capture.

The raids were part of a police crackdown on a suspected Jemaah Islamiyah cell that recently established a paramilitary training camp in the western province of Aceh.

Police said the raids were based on information from about 20 suspected militants from Aceh and Java already in custody.