2016 Movida Bar grenade attack

On 28 June 2016, a bar located in Puchong, Selangor, Malaysia, was attacked by two people who threw a grenade into the bar while 20 customers were watching the UEFA Euro 2016 match between Italy and Spain. The attack injured eight people, including one foreigner from China. The attackers left the scene on a motorcycle but were subsequently arrested. The attack was described as the first ever Islamic terror attack against the country perpetrated by Malaysians militants linked to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.[3]

2016 Movida Bar grenade attack
LocationPuchong, Selangor, Malaysia
Date28 June 2016
02:15AM MST (UTC+08:00)
Attack type
Grenade attack
PerpetratorsIslamic State of Iraq and the Levant[1][2]
AssailantsImam Wahyudin Karjono
Jonius Ondie
No. of participants


Although Malaysia is located far from the major conflicts of the Middle East, the growing Islamic extremism and religious bigotry, along with the religion's politicisation, has led to radicalism.[4][5] In addition to there was no condemnation from the Malaysian government itself of the radical actions of Malaysian ISIS supporters.[6] Until 2015, there were around 200 Malaysian Muslims that had joined the Islamic State (IS) in its fight in the Syrian Civil War and Iraqi Civil War to establish a modern Islamic caliphate. Many of these returnees have been brainwashed by their leaders in Syria and Iraq to fight their own countrymen because they don't share the same interpretations of Islamic law.[7] Following the rise of extremism, some radical Malaysian Muslims have threatened the government and country, and many have been arrested and blocked from entering the country as well as travelling to Syria. This is believed to be the main reason that many of the Malaysian ISIS members and supporters who reside in the country have decided to rebel against their own government.[7]


Shortly after the attack, the deputy police chief of Selangor state, Abdul Rahim Jaafar, ruled out the possibility of it being a terrorist attack,[8] and said the motive was business rivalry, revenge, or a targeted killing. a similar attack happened in 2014 when a man was killed and 13 others injured after a grenade exploded outside a pub in Kuala Lumpur that was linked to gambling kingpin.[8][9][10]

According to a Facebook post released shortly after the incident, the director of the bar, Roger Hew, claimed preliminary investigations revealed that the attackers were "an Indian couple" that was targeted by two Indian men due to personal matters.[11] However, according to Sin Chew Daily who posted a screenshot of a Facebook post under the account "Abu Hamzah Al-Fateh" (the Facebook account is known to be associated with a Malaysian man fighting for ISIS in Syria). The owner of the account reportedly wrote that two members of "junud khilafah wilayah milazia" [sic] had targeted a nightclub full of "heathens" who had not respected the Muslim holy month of Ramadan with "immoral acts". The user urged other Muslims to stay away from places like this to avoid becoming targets.[11] The claims were also supported by a statement issued from an ISIS platform monitored by the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore.[2]


On 4 July, Malaysia's Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Khalid Abu Bakar confirmed that the attack was perpetrated by Malaysian ISIS members.[1] This was met with shock and anger by many Malaysians.[12] Following more investigations, around 15 people (from different states of Perlis, Selangor, Perak, Kedah, Penang and Sabah) have been arrested including two police officers, many related to ISIS. The two people who are suspected of throwing the grenade were also arrested.[3] Malaysia's IGP said the attack was planned by a Malaysian residing in Syria named Muhamad Wanndy Mohamad Jedi (nom de guerre Abu Hamzah) who instructed his men to launch attacks in their home country against senior leaders in the government and the Royal Malaysia Police, as well as judges because they try to block militant activity.[12] Wanndy also has reportedly warned that there will be more attacks to come although this has been denied by most experts as their group is suspected of not having the resources to launch a bigger attack.[13] However, all these claims were denied by Wanndy itself, saying that:

Those are serious allegations to make me a scapegoat. They (police) are cooking up stories as revenge towards me and manipulating facts of the arrests to divert people's attention from Malaysia's current issues, which are getting worse. Those arrested are mere supporters, who expressed support for the Islamic caliphate, and they have never received instructions from me to launch attacks on leaders and judges, as claimed by the IGP.[14]

The two perpetrators who threw the grenade that have been caught identified as:

  • Imam Wahyudin Karjono of Puchong, Selangor
  • Jonius Ondie Jahali of Kota Marudu, Sabah

Both suspects have pleaded guilty to charges of attempting to murder eight people and possession of a grenade and to an additional eight charges.[15][16] Their sentences included a long-term jail up to 30-years for their murder attempt and another 14 years jail together with caning (rotan) for their possession of explosives and another 30 years jail or life imprisonment for becoming a member of and supporting terrorist activities.[17] Preliminary investigation revealed they obtained the grenade from a neighbouring country.[18]

Another two that are believed to be involved in the planning of attack are identified as:

  • Md Saifuddin Muji of Rengit, Johor
  • Jasanizam Rosni of Batu Pahat, Johor

Both also have since been arrested during anti-terrorism operations that were carried out from 20 July–9 August.[19][20]

On 29 March 2017, the two main perpetrators were sentenced to 25 years in jail with eight charges for attempted murder, possession of firearms, committing criminal and terrorist acts.[21]


No deaths were reported after the incident, but eight people are injured during the blast. Most of the victims were Malaysians while another was a female tourist from China.[22]


Following the attack, the Royal Malaysia Police and Malaysian Army have started beefing up security to prevent attacks in the future.[23] The US State Department has plans to set up a data centre in Malaysia following the attack to curb further ISIS propaganda.[24]

See also


  1. "Nightclub blast in Puchong linked to IS: Malaysian police chief". Bernama. Channel NewsAsia. 4 July 2016. Archived from the original on 6 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  2. Deborah Cassrels (30 June 2016). "Islamic State claims Kuala Lumpur nightclub grenade attack". The Australian. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  3. M. Kumar (4 July 2016). "Cops confirm Movida bombing first ever IS attack in Malaysia". The Star. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  4. "Asri cautions against blind support in the name of Islam". Free Malaysia Today. 8 September 2016. Archived from the original on 13 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  5. Antonio Navalón (24 August 2016). "Malaysia the Normandy of Islamic State?". New Straits Times. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  6. Jessica Chasmar (25 June 2014). "Malaysian PM tells ruling party it must be brave like ISIL: report". The Washington Times. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  7. Julien Gradot (21 October 2015). "Why Malaysia has a problem with Islamic State". The Malay Mail. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  8. Rozanna Latiff; Simon Cameron-Moore (28 June 2016). "Grenade attack on Malaysian pub wounds eight, police rule out terrorism". Reuters. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  9. Hariz Mohd; Hani Sharmira Shahrudin (28 June 2016). "Puchong grenade attack: Business rivalry or revenge?". New Straits Times. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  10. Thasha Jayamanogaran (10 October 2014). "Grenade attack linked to gambling kingpin, source says". The Malay Mail. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  11. Sumisha Naidu (28 June 2016). "Eight injured in blast at nightspot in Puchong, Malaysia". Channel NewsAsia. Archived from the original on 2 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  12. Sumisha Naidu (5 July 2016). "Malaysians angered by Puchong nightclub blast linked to IS". Channel NewsAsia. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  13. Hariz Mohd (5 July 2016). "IS warns of more attacks in Malaysia". New Straits Times. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  14. "IS militant in Syria denies ordering Movida attack". Free Malaysia Today. 5 July 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  15. "Letupan Bom Puchong: Dua Lelaki Didakwa Lakukan Perbuatan Pengganas" (in Malay). mStar. 25 July 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  16. Wani Muthiah; Maizatul Nazlina; Austin Cameons; D. Kanyakumari; Ashley Tang (26 July 2016). "Movida bombers unfazed by charges". The Star. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  17. "Long jail term plus rotan if guilty". Daily Express. 24 August 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  18. "Movida club bombing was Daish's work - IGP". Astro Awani. 4 July 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  19. Ida Lim (4 July 2016). "IGP confirms IS linked to Movida nightclub blast". The Malay Mail. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  20. "Malaysia Arrests 9 People over Links to IS". Latin American Herald Tribune. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  21. "Malaysia nightclub bombers sentenced to 25 years' jail". The Star/Asia News Network. The Straits Times. 29 March 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2017.
  22. "Malaysia: Puchong Nightclub Explosion Caused By ISIS Members?". The Coverage. 28 June 2016. Archived from the original on 1 January 2019. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  23. Farik Zolkepli (19 July 2016). "Malaysian police beefing up security in wake of IS threats". The Star/ANN. AsiaOne. Archived from the original on 24 July 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  24. "US to set up centre in KL to combat IS propaganda". Free Malaysia Today. 14 July 2016. Archived from the original on 23 October 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.

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