Indonesia’s senior security minister was recovering after surgery in the wake of a knife attack a knife attack carried out by two suspected Islamic militants, President Joko Widodo said Friday.

Former general Wiranto, 72, was stepping out of a car when a man and a woman attacked him and two other people with him during a visit to the town of Pandeglang in Banten province on Thursday.

The attack was witnessed by villagers and children who were there to greet the minister.

“Thank God his condition is stable and improving.

“He talked to me and said he wanted to be discharged soon to take part in (cabinet) meetings,” Joko told reporters.

Wiranto, a former armed forces commander, was airlifted to Jakarta’s Central Army Hospital after suffering two deep wounds to his abdomen in the attack.

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Police said the attackers, believed to a married couple identified as Syahril Alamsyah and Fitri Andriana, were suspected to be members of Jamaah Ansharut Daulah, said to be a local affiliate of the Islamic State militant group.

Syahril had been under surveillance for three months by security authorities before the attack, State Intelligence Agency chief Budi Gunawan said late Thursday.

“We have monitored the perpetrator since three months ago,” Budi told reporters.

He said that the suspect had moved from one place to another this year.

Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority country, has been hit by a string of terrorist attacks since the 2000s, with more recent strikes being blamed on Islamic State-inspired militants.