Daily Archives: December 25, 2018

Sad days ahead of Xmas, New Year celebrations by Andi Abdussalam

Jakarta (ANTARA News) – People around the globe are usually happy in the face of the year end as they are ready to celebrate Christmas and New Year festivities, but Indonesian people had to bow their heads in sorrow.

A towering tsunami devastated several regions in the coastal areas of Banten province in Java and South Lampung District in Lampung Province on Saturday (Dec 22), killing at least 334 people.

The tsunami was believed to have been triggered by an avalanche of the slopes of Anak Krakatau volcano explosions in the Sunda Strait that separates the Islands of Java and Sumatra.

The Sunda Strait tsunami happened several months after an earthquake and its subsequent tsunami hit Palu, Central Sulawesi, on Sept 28, killing 2,102 people, and Lombok Island on Aug 5, claiming the lives of 555 residents.

Expressions of condolences are pouring from home and abroad for the victims. Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have expressed their condolences.

Anak Krakatau is a small volcanic island located in the Sunda Strait between the islands of Java and Sumatra. It emerged from the ocean half a century after Mount Krakataus deadly eruption in 1883, hence the term anak (child) in its name, according to the Jakarta Post.

Anak Krakatau has seen small regular eruptions since June. The volcano was put on the second-highest alert level in 2012, but it had been erupting since some time ago.

It was surprising as the tsunami struck Banten and Lampung on Saturday night (Dec 22) without being preceded by an earthquake and it was believed to have occurred due to volcanic activity of Mount Anak Krakatau.

The Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) noted that the tsunami, which occurred in the Sunda Strait on Saturday, was caused by the avalanche of the slopes of Mount Anak Krakatau.

“From the observation of satellite imagery, there has been a deformation of 64 hectares of Gunung Anak Krakatau, especially on the southwest slope,” BMKG Head Dwikorita Karnawati noted in a statement in Jakarta on Monday.

Deformation or change in shape on the surface of the body of Gunung Anak Krakatau was due to a collapse caused by the vibration or tremor from volcanic activity.

This condition was also exacerbated by extreme weather that occurred in the form of waves and high rainfall. The BMKG had virtually issued an early warning the day before.

“This phenomenon is reinforced by an analysis of four tide gauge models, which show that the tsunamis energy source originates from the South of Mount Anak Krakatau,” Karnawati said.

According to the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas), the death toll from the Sunda Strait tsunami rose to 334 on Monday.

The death toll might increase, as many people were still missing, Fahrizal, spokesman for Basarnas, remarked. Quoting a report received from the field at 11 a.m. local time on Monday, he stated that a total of 764 people were injured, while 61 others were still missing.

The tsunami hit 17 places, including Carita, Panimbang, Cigeulis, Sumur, Labuan, Tanjung Lesung, Cibaliung, Cimanggu, Pagelaran, Bojong, Anyer, Sangiang Island, Menes, Hampeleum Island, Banyuasin, and OSC Lampung, he added.

The tsunami killed 74 people in Panimbang, 70 in Carita, 55 in OSC Lampung, 46 in Tanjung Lesung, 38 in Sumur, and 12 each in Labuan and Anyer.

He remarked that Basarnas, along with relevant agencies, were still searching for other victims at several tsunami-hit places. “We hope that all tsunami victims would be found and identified,” he added.

The Sunda Strait tsunami followed two previous tsunamis that occurred in Indonesia over the past few months.

On September 28, 2018, an earthquake and a subsequent tsunami devastated Palu, Central Sualwesi, killing 2,102 people. It also injured 4,612 victims and left 680 others missing.

A total of 68,451 homes were seriously damaged and 78,994 people were displaced. The BMKG initially announced that the earthquake measured 7.7 on the Richter scale, but it later updated the magnitude to 7.4 on Richter scale.

The National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) confirmed that tsunami waves had struck several parts of Central Sulawesi, namely Talise and Donggala Beaches, after a 7.4-magnitude earthquake hit the province.

“The BNPB confirmed to the BPBD (Regional Disaster Mitigation Agency) that the tsunami hit the Talise coastal area in Palu City and the beach in Donggala,” Head of Information Data and Public Relations Center at BNPB Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said in Jakarta.

Before the Palu tsunami, Lombok Island in West Nusa Tenggara Province had earlier faced the same fate when an earthquake with its subsequent tsunami hit several districts in the coastal areas. Before the quake-triggered tsunami, Lombok was struck by a series of earthquakes measuring between 6 and 7 on the Richter scale during the July and August period.

The most severe quake experienced by Lombok was the one that occurred on Aug 5, 2018, with a 7.0-magnitude recorded on the Richter scale.

According to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, as of Aug 23, at least 555 people had been killed and 829 others were injured. Most fatalities were residents of North Lombok District areas due to their proximity to the strong earthquakes epicenter. The repeated earthquakes Lombok have also damaged 23,098 houses and led to the forced displacement of 134,236 people.

Source: ANTARA News

INDONESIA TSUNAMI: PRESS JOKOWI ORDERS NATIONAL AGENCY TO BUY EARLY WARNING SYSTEMS

PANDEGLANG (Indonesia), Indonesian President Joko Widodo has ordered the country’s Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) to purchase early warning systems, following a tsunami that ravaged the region.

As of Monday evening, at least 373 people have died and more than 1,400 are injured.

“I have instructed BMKG to purchase equipment for early detection, early warning systems that will be able to provide timely alerts for civilians, so that they can take action quickly (when a natural disaster happens),” Widodo told reporters in Pandeglang, Banten – one of the areas worst hit by the tsunami.

An official from the country’s disaster agency (BNPB) said earlier on Monday that Indonesia’s tsunami buoy warning system has not been operational since 2012, which meant that no alert was given to the residents in the areas struck by the tsunami.

In a video released by the Indonesian president’s press secretariat, Widodo can be seen walking through the rubble left behind by the tsunami, as well as speaking to survivors and disaster respondents.

The military and the police will continue to search for survivors, Widodo said.

“Today, we will sweep (the various areas) again, this time from the sea, to look out for areas that we might have missed out,” he said.

“The BNPB will help the victims, and (the families) of victims who died will receive aid and compensation from the social ministry.”

When asked about the cause of the tsunami, Widodo said that investigations were ongoing.

“We know it was not from an earthquake, but the exact source has not been confirmed. So let’s not jump into conclusions.”

Widodo also praised the military and the police for their quick responses.

“I have seen evacuation being done quickly by TNI (military) and Polri (police), helped by the local administration … I appreciate their quick responses.”

Responding to questions by reporters, the president added that he has instructed that disaster education be included in the schools’ syllabus.

On whether the disaster mitigation budget will be increased, he said: “Most importantly, the budget is rightly targeted and rightly used.”

Source: NAM News Network

INDONESIA TSUNAMI: PRESS JOKOWI ORDERS NATIONAL AGENCY TO BUY EARLY WARNING SYSTEMS

PANDEGLANG (Indonesia), Indonesian President Joko Widodo has ordered the country’s Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) to purchase early warning systems, following a tsunami that ravaged the region.

As of Monday evening, at least 373 people have died and more than 1,400 are injured.

“I have instructed BMKG to purchase equipment for early detection, early warning systems that will be able to provide timely alerts for civilians, so that they can take action quickly (when a natural disaster happens),” Widodo told reporters in Pandeglang, Banten – one of the areas worst hit by the tsunami.

An official from the country’s disaster agency (BNPB) said earlier on Monday that Indonesia’s tsunami buoy warning system has not been operational since 2012, which meant that no alert was given to the residents in the areas struck by the tsunami.

In a video released by the Indonesian president’s press secretariat, Widodo can be seen walking through the rubble left behind by the tsunami, as well as speaking to survivors and disaster respondents.

The military and the police will continue to search for survivors, Widodo said.

“Today, we will sweep (the various areas) again, this time from the sea, to look out for areas that we might have missed out,” he said.

“The BNPB will help the victims, and (the families) of victims who died will receive aid and compensation from the social ministry.”

When asked about the cause of the tsunami, Widodo said that investigations were ongoing.

“We know it was not from an earthquake, but the exact source has not been confirmed. So let’s not jump into conclusions.”

Widodo also praised the military and the police for their quick responses.

“I have seen evacuation being done quickly by TNI (military) and Polri (police), helped by the local administration … I appreciate their quick responses.”

Responding to questions by reporters, the president added that he has instructed that disaster education be included in the schools’ syllabus.

On whether the disaster mitigation budget will be increased, he said: “Most importantly, the budget is rightly targeted and rightly used.”

Source: NAM News Network

W Java raises funds to build mosque in Palestine

Bandung, W Java (ANTARA News) – The West Java provincial government has planned to raise funds in an effort to help build a mosque in Palestine, which will start by the end of January 2019.

The fundraising will take place in conjunction with the launch of the mosque design, West Java Provincial Governor Ridwan Kamil stated here on Monday after meeting with a Palestinian official.

“The (Palestinian) people are currently unable to perform their worship in (mosque) and hold Friday prayer. I agreed to meet their request. When it comes to dealing with the mosque, I certainly will help, and we would design (the mosque),” the governor remarked.

On the occasion, the governor requested the provincial community to help in building a mosque.

In 2014, the “Syeikh Ajlin” mosque in the Palestinian area of Gaza was bombarded by Israel. The mosque has not been rebuilt yet, making it difficult for local residents to perform their worship.

“I knock on the hearts of West Javanese Muslims, in particular, or Indonesian people (in general), so that we can hopefully present the Ukhuwah Islamiyah (Muslims brotherhood) in Gaza in the near future,” he disclosed.

Source: ANTARA News