Indonesian authorities say the leader of al Qaeda in southeast Asia, Noordin Muhammed Top, has been killed during a raid.
Police raided a home on the island of Java in central Indonesia Wednesday evening, searching for suspects in the Jakarta hotel bombings.
Authorities reported a long gunfight ensued, which was followed by an explosion that left four suspects dead. Among them was Noordin, a so-called terrorist mastermind who had eluded police for nine years. He has been blamed for a string of deadly attacks in Indonesia.
"Noordin's remains were found in the house on the outskirts of the town of Solo in central Java after the hours-long gunfight," said nation police Chief Bambang Hendarso Danuri.
"Fingerprints of Noordin's stored on a police database matched those of the body," he continuted. "Documents and laptop computers confiscated from the house prove that Noordin "is the leader of al-Qaeda in Southeast Asia."
DNA tests have not yet been conducted.
Three alleged terrorists also survived the explosion and are in police custody.
Police also found hundreds of pounds of explosives, weapons, grenades and bombs at the scene.
"The most dangerous terrorist in Southeast Asia has been put out of commission," said Jim Della-Giacoma, Southeast Asia project director for the International Crisis Group think tank.
"It would have been better if police had managed to arrest him alive, but it appears that this was not an option," he said. "Unfortunately, Noordin's death does not mean an end to terrorism in Indonesia, though it has been dealt a significant blow."