Monthly Archives: May 2020

Landslide covers section of Semarang-Solo toll road


Semarang, C Java A landslide triggered by heavy rains from Saturday night to early Sunday blocked a section of Semarang-Solo toll road in Semarang District, Central Java.

The section of the toll road covered by landslide was not far from the rest area at kilometer 429 of the toll road, Chief of the Semarang District Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) Heru Subroto said.

The landslide forced the toll road operator to divert vehicles heading to Semarang to non-toll road via Ungaran toll gate.

“The vehicles coming from Solo had been diverted out of the toll road via Ungaran toll gate,”: he said.

By Sunday morning, officers of the toll road operator had got rid of the mud covering the section of the roll road, he said.


Source: Antara News

North Sulawesi tourism industy ready to embrace new normal

Manado, North Sulawesi Deputy Governor of North Sulawesi (Sulut) Steven Kandouw said the tourism sector in this area is ready to embrace the new normal.

“Supposing COVID-19 cannot be eliminated, we, however, must be able to control it. Just now, we discussed the new normal with the central government, and inevitably from now on we have to adapt ourselves to it,” Kandouw said here on Saturday.

Health protocols are crucial as vaccine against the COVID-19 is not available yet. Tourism businesses should continue despite all limitations, he said.

“The government is trying to do financial relaxation. In the future, the tourism format must be adjusted to the situation. Whether we like it or not, all our tourism transactions must be carried out online,” he said.

In accordance, with the COVID-19 protocols, everyone must wear face mask and use hand sanitizer, among other things.

“Show it to potential domestic and international tourists that North Sulawesi is safe because it applies the COVID-19 protocols, hotels must implement those protocols,” he said.

He was upbeat that there would be a boom in the tourism sector when the pandemic is over.

He called on the tourism stakeholders to be united, innovative and improve services in order to attract tourists to North Sulawesi.

In the meantime, prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, Indonesia had outlined a target to receive at least 17 million foreign tourists in 2020.

However, in the wake of the viral outbreak, the number of foreign tourists visiting Indonesia had dropped sharply in March to 470,900, or equal to the figure in 2007, according to the Central Statistics Office (BPS) on April 4, 2020.

The March figure indicated a 45.5-percent drop as compared to February and 64.11 percent from that in March 2019, according to BPS Head Suhariyanto.


Source: Antara News

Jakarta emergency hospital for COVID-19 records 2,472 recoveries

Jakarta The Wisma Atlet Emergency Hospital (RSD) in Kemayoran, Central Jakarta, recorded the recovery of 2,472 inpatients from March 23 to May 31, 2020.

“The hospital has registered a total of 4,092 inpatients, of which 2,472 were discharged,” Marine Colonel Aris Mudian, spokesman of the emergency hospital for the COVID-19 treatment, noted here on Sunday.

The total number of inpatients transferred to other hospitals has, so far, reached 125, while three patients had died of the disease.

The emergency hospital for COVID-19 treatment also recorded that the number of recoveries rose by 155, from 2,317 on May 30, while the number of inpatients increased by 32, from 4,060 on Saturday, to 4,092 on Sunday.

On Sunday, the Wisma Atlet Hospital treated 645 inpatients, comprising 403 men and 242 women.

The 645 inpatients included 616 testing positive for COVID-19 infection, 26 inpatients under surveillance (PDP) and three patients under monitoring (ODP).

“The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases increases by 10, from 606 to 616, PDP up by two, from 24 to 26, and ODP surges by three,” he said.

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) announced the country’s first two COVID-19 cases on March 2, 2020.

The nation has declared the novel coronavirus outbreak as a national emergency and imposed a large-scale social distancing to break the chain of the COVID-19 transmission.

The Wisma Atlet Emergency Hospital was formerly an athlete’s village that accommodated athletes from Asian countries when Jakarta hosted the 2018 Asian Games.

The central government has also converted a Galang Island refugee camp into an emergency hospital for the COVID-19 in Batam, Riau Islands Province.


Source: Antara News

118 crew members involved in illegal fishing test negative for COVID

Jakarta The Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry has conducted rapid tests on 118 crew members of fishing vessels involved in illegal fishing in Indonesia and all of them have tested negative for the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

The ministry in cooperation with the Batam City COVID-19 Task Force conducted the rapid tests on the crew members of the fishing vessels facing legal process at he Batam marine and fisheries supervision (PSDKP) port in Riau Islands Province on Saturday, Director General of Marine and Fishery Resources Surveillance Tb Haeru Rahayu said here on Sunday.

The rapid tests were aimed at ensuring that the ministry has complied with the COVID-19 prevention protocols in handling the crew members of fishing vessels involved in illegal fishing, Haeru said.

He said the ministry had tightly applied the COVID-19 prevention protocols to the crew members of the fishing vessels.

The ministry screened the temperatures of the crew members in association with the port health office before they took rapid tests, he said,

In addition, Investigators questioned the crew members of fishing vessels by keeping physical distance and avoiding close contact with them.

“We have applied all the protocols tightly and properly. Of course, it is important for us to ensure that the crew members of the fishing vessels we have handled, deported or handed to the relevant agency are in good health,” he said.


Source: Antara News

The importance of more women in peacekeeping

The United Nations’ landmark resolution 1325, adopted unanimously on October 20, 2000, marks the moment when the UN Security Council first highlighted the need for more women’s participation in peacekeeping missions.

It has now been 20 years since the resolution was adopted, and still the mainstreaming of women peacekeepers in field missions has remained a challenge.

In his speech on the International Day of UN Peacekeepers this week, UN Secretary-General António Guterres revealed that women represent just six percent of uniformed military, police, justice, and corrections personnel in field missions, although they play a critical role in protecting civilians and maintaining peace.

“Women often have greater access in the communities we serve, enabling us to improve the protection of civilians, promote human rights and enhance overall performance. We must do more to achieve women’s equal representation in all areas of peace and security,” Guterres reiterated.

Even though women’s ability in field missions has been recognized, increasing their participation in the field may not be as simple as it sounds. In most armed forces worldwide, few female soldiers are allowed to be deployed in combat situations. Though more armies are now welcoming women, few are likely to serve in hostile-environments, such as peacekeeping missions.

Lack of access may not be the sole obstacle to women joining peacekeeping missions. For some female soldiers, the problem could be more personal. First Sergeant Imakulata Ngamel, an Indonesian soldier deployed with the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), said women soldiers who are married and have children may be more reluctant to apply for UN peacekeeping missions.

“They may be motivated at first to apply for the mission, but because of their families and children, most women soldiers would drop the opportunity,” Ngamel said in a virtual interview held by the UN Information Center in Jakarta this week.

The UN began sending peacekeeping missions in 1948 when the Security Council authorized a team of military observers to oversee the Armistice Agreement between Israel and its Arab neighbors in the Middle East. Nearly half a century later, in 1993, “women made up one percent of deployed uniformed personnel. In 2019, out of approximately 95,000 peacekeepers, women constituted 4.7 percent of military contingents and 10.8 percent of formed police units in UN peacekeeping missions,” according to a statement from the UN’s peacekeeping mission.

As of January this year, women represented at least 6.4 percent (equivalent to 5,284 personnel) of the total 82,863 military and police personnel deployed in the field, while male troops and police officers made up 93.6 percent (equivalent to 77,579 personnel) of the total force.

Therefore, the UN pledged to increase women’s representation in peacekeeping missions by 15 percent for military personnel, 25 percent for military observers and staff officers, 20 percent for police officer, and 30 percent for individual police officers by 2028.

Joining the pledge, the Indonesian government has gradually increased deployment of women troops in UN peacekeeping missions. Despite a drop in the total number of troops deployed from 3,080 personnel in 2019 to 2,847 in 2020, the number of Indonesian women soldiers joining the mission has increased from 106 to 159.

The number of Indonesian female soldiers joining the peacekeeping mission of UNIFIL in Lebanon has also surged in the last three years — from 22 personnel in 2018 to 25 in 2019 and 35 this year, said Ngamel.
Critical role
In many regions torn by armed conflict or civil war, women and children appear to be the most affected group, as they may end up as victims of conflict-related sexual violence or gender-based violence. A human rights advocate noted this year how, in many instances, women and children have been sexually exploited by UN peacekeeping forces in exchange for food or support.

On its official website, Human Rights Watch has stated “exploitation and abuse by UN peacekeepers and personnel has been reported since the 1990s concerning peacekeeping missions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, East Timor, Haiti, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and South Sudan, among others”.

“Haiti is just one of many countries where peacekeepers have raped women and girls, or sexually exploited them in exchange for food or support. My colleagues have also reported on rape by African Union force in Somalia, French and UN Peacekeepers in Central African Republic and UN troops in the Democratic of Congo,” said Skye Wheeler, a senior researcher from Human Rights Watch, in her report published earlier this year.

Following the reports, the UN has conducted an investigations and announced the nationalities of the perpetrators, as well as established a trust fund and recovery program for the victims.

In light of this issue, greater women’s participation in UN field missions has become critical as it could prevent further sexual abuse and exploitation. Women soldiers would instill a sense of security among women and children, and mainly victims of abuse, said another Indonesian soldier with UNIFIL, First Lieutenant Rima Eka Tiara Sari, in an interview held this week.

“We (the Indonesian battalion in UNIFIL) have set up a special team to join the mission’s military gender task force and we have provided military assistance to the team. We have organized several campaigns on (sexual abuse) prevention,” the lieutenant explained.

In a separate interview, Lieutenant Colonel Ratih Pusporini has recounted how, during a mission in 2008, she and her team succeeded in approaching victims of sexual abuse in a conflict-affected village in Congo.

“We know the victims are women, the previous group had failed to retrieve this information,” Pusporini was quoted as saying by an official website of the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Indonesia.

Women play a greater role than men in preventing gender-based violence, including sexual abuse and exploitation, and qualify to carry out military patrols in hostile environments, conduct military training, and serve in combat, said First Sergeant, Imakulata Ngamel.

What is required is more chances for women to join peacekeeping missions. This means all countries “must believe in their female personnel, giving them equal opportunities from the beginning and in all steps of their careers, and encourage them to be deployed,” said Commander Carla Monteiro de Castro Araujo, a Naval officer from Brazil, who recently received the 2019 UN Military Gender Advocate award this year.

“We need them (women) on the ground,” she reiterated in her speech this week.



Source: Antara News