COVID-19: East Java denies entry to Viking Sun cruise ship, passengers

first_imgRisma said in a letter that Viking Sun passengers were only allowed to disembark from the ship at Tanjung Perak Port after undergoing a laboratory check, the results of which would be known two days after the test.“However, it is impossible to do [the test] as the Viking Sun only docks in Surabaya for less than 10 hours,” Risma said in a letter, which also stipulated the restriction on the ship’s crew and passengers from disembarking at the port.The restriction will also be applicable to other cruise ships with travel histories to countries with confirmed COVID-19 cases.An official at Tanjung Perak harbormaster’s office Rony Fahmi said the office would follow up the decision: “We decided to deny entry to the Viking Sun cruise ship following a meeting with other institutions.”Read also: Four Indonesians in Japan recover from COVID-19: MinisterState-owned port operator PT Pelabuhan Indonesia III (Pelindo III) vice president Wilis Aji Wiranata said the company would comply with the administrations’ decision.“Our initial plan was to dispatch officials from the port health authority to check on the passengers and crews’ health before they disembarked from the ship. This would be done if the cruise ship is allowed to dock [in Surabaya],” Wilis said.The MV Viking Sun previously docked in Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara, on Monday. The cruise ship’s captain stated in its Maritime Declaration of Health that all people aboard the ship had been declared healthy.Nevertheless, East Nusa Tenggara health authorities screened all passengers and crew when the ship docked in Labuan Bajo.According to Pelindo III, the MV Viking Sun will continue its voyage to Benoa Port in Bali after docking in Surabaya. The boat will dock at Benoa until Mar. 10 and sail to Lombok the next day, before returning to Surabaya on Mar. 14. After that, the ship will sail to Sri Lanka, where it is scheduled to arrive on Mar. 20. (dpk)Topics : “During a meeting yesterday, we decided not to accept the ship’s request to moor at Tanjung Perak Port to prevent mass panic among citizens,” East Java health agency head Herlin Ferliana told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.Read also: Cruise control? Securitizing luxury cruise ships in times of coronavirusThe decision was echoed by Surabaya Mayor Tri “Risma” Rismaharini, who claimed to have received information that two passengers aboard the ship were suffering from a cold and fever. The passengers recently traveled to New Caledonia and Australia, which is among the countries to have recorded confirmed COVID-19 cases.According to data compiled by the John Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering, Australia had recorded 52 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Thursday afternoon. To date, two have died from the disease, while 11 others have recovered. As many as 800 tourists from the United States and Australia aboard the MV Viking Sun cruise ship will not be able to visit Surabaya, East Java, as the Surabaya and East Java administrations have denied the cruise ship entry to the city.The Norwegian-flagged cruise ship, carrying 1,395 passengers and crew, initially planned to dock at Tanjung Perak Port in the provincial capital on Friday.The East Java administration rejected the ship’s request to dock at Tanjung Perak as East Java Governor Khofifah Indar Parawansa made the decision not to jeopardize the health of locals.last_img read more

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Don’t export masks, Minister pleads amid coronavirus panic buying

first_imgTopics : “We urge them to increase production and fulfil domestic needs first […] We are calling on producers to not export [masks],” he told reporters in Jakarta on Thursday.The minister’s appeal follows cases of mask manufacturers who allegedly hoard or produce low-quality, high-price masks to tap into the recent skyrocketing price of masks following fears of a global spread of the novel coronavirus. Customers in the country have been swarming supermarkets and drugstores for masks and hand sanitizers following President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s announcement of the country’s first two confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Monday.Panic buying has triggered a price surge for the item both online and offline in the last two days. A box of face masks is now selling for an average price of Rp 300,000 (US$ 21) – a whopping 1,500 percent increase from the original Rp 20,000 per box. The National Consumer Protection Agency (BPKN) chairman Ardiansyah Parman pointed out on Monday that culprits could be imprisoned for up to five years or face a fine of Rp 50 billion (US$ 3.53 million) for withholding an important product over a period time amid scarcity, quoting the 2014 law on trade.Read also: We’ve found no violation: KPPU on skyrocketing face mask prices”Don’t try to find opportunities when the public is experiencing struggles,” he said in a press conference. “Empathize with them instead.”On Wednesday, State-owned Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir said during a state-owned pharmaceutical company PT Kimia Farma site visit in Jakarta that the firm has limited the number of masks and hand sanitizer available for purchase at its 1,300 stores nationwide.The policy aims to ensure the products’ availability in the long run amid panic buying prompted by the COVID-19 spread in Indonesia.center_img Trade Minister Agus Suparmanto has urged mask producers to halt the export of masks and cater to domestic needs first amid a spike in demand for the item in Indonesia.The problem is, he said, that a number of producers have intentionally been holding back mask supplies and raising prices.Read also: Kimia Farma puts in place mask and hand sanitizer rationing to ensure availabilitylast_img read more

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Hollywood rapist Harvey Weinstein jailed for 23 years

first_imgDisgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault Wednesday, capping a sensational downfall for the once-powerful producer in a landmark case for the #MeToo movement.Weinstein, who turns 68 next week, faces spending the rest of his life behind bars after New York Justice James Burke rebuffed his pleas for the minimum five-year sentence.The judge, issuing a heavy term close to the maximum 29 years allowed, was unmoved by a rambling statement Weinstein made to the court in which he failed to express any remorse for his actions or apologize to victims.”I’m totally confused,” Weinstein said, before blaming the #MeToo global reckoning against men abusing positions of power for his predicament.”I was the first example and now there are thousands of men being accused. I’m worried about this country,” he added.The sentencing completed a dramatic fall from grace for the titan-turned-pariah, who lost much of his $150 million fortune fighting allegations that surfaced in October 2017.Nearly 90 women, including Angelina Jolie and Salma Hayek, have come forward alleging 40 years of vile predatory behavior by the Oscar-winning producer of “Shakespeare in Love” and numerous other critical and box office hits.The Silence Breakers — a group of 24 Weinstein accusers that includes Ashley Judd, Rosanna Arquette and Rose McGowan — said Weinstein’s legacy would always be his rape conviction. “He is going to jail — but no amount of jail time will repair the lives he ruined, the careers he destroyed, or the damage he has caused,” they said in a statement.Weinstein was taken away from the Manhattan criminal court in a wheelchair as the six accusers who testified at his trial, including actress Annabella Sciorra of “The Sopranos,” hugged in the front row.Members of the public clapped as the accusers and prosecutors walked out of the courtroom. ‘No longer hiding’ Weinstein was found guilty of a criminal sexual act in the first degree and rape in the third degree on February 24. His lawyers have appealed.Seven men and five women convicted him of raping ex-actress Jessica Mann in 2013 and of forcibly performing oral sex on former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006.Mann, 34, and Haleyi, 42, delivered powerful victim impact statements Wednesday.Haleyi said being attacked by Weinstein had “diminished my confidence and faith in people.”Mann said his conviction had given her the strength to rebuild her life.”My monsters are no longer hiding in my closet,” she told the court.The producer — famous for his hard-nosed approach to work and Oscars campaigns — was cleared of the most serious charges of predatory sexual assault, as well as rape in the first degree. But prosecutors called on Burke to issue a lengthy jail term, saying Weinstein engaged in a “lifetime of abuse” and had shown “a total lack of remorse” for his actions.In a pre-sentencing letter, the prosecution asked the judge to consider 36 other sexual abuse and harassment allegations against Weinstein dating back to the 1970s that were not part of the trial.”He held all cards and played them at his will,” lead prosecutor Joan Illuzzi-Orbon said in court. Weinstein’s team suggested Burke should take into account the achievements of a man whose films received more than 300 Oscar nominations and 81 statuettes. “His life story, his accomplishments, and struggles are simply remarkable and should not be disregarded in total because of the jury’s verdict,” the lawyers wrote in a pre-sentencing memo.Weinstein also pleaded with Burke that he may never see his five children again, the youngest two of whom are under ten years old.Weinstein’s counsel regularly clashed with Burke during the trial, even claiming at one point that he was biased against their client. ‘On notice’ Afterwards, lead attorney Donna Rotunno suggested the intense media coverage of the trial had meant the judge “probably felt a type of pressure” to send a message.Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr thanked the court for putting “sexual predators on notice” and praised his accusers “indescribable courage” throughout the case.”Their words took down a predator and put him behind bars, and gave hope to survivors of sexual violence all across the world,” he said in a statement.Outside court, celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred, who represents Sciorra and Haleyi, gleefully held up a sign that read “20 + 3 years,” the sentences Weinstein received for each count.Tarale Wulff, who testified that Weinstein raped her when she was a cocktail waitress, expressed joy that the sentence was more than she expected.”For the first time I can say I feel a sense of happiness,” Wulff told reporters.Weinstein is expected to be incarcerated outside New York City. Shortly after his sentencing, prosecutors in Los Angeles said they had “begun the process of extraditing” Weinstein to the Californian city where he faces further sex crimes charges. Topics :last_img read more

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Indonesia’s death toll from COVID-19 hits 32 as disease spreads to half of the country

first_imgJakarta reported the most new COVID-19 infections with 32 cases — with a total of 215 cases to date — followed by Bali with three new cases, making a total of four cases on the resort island.Banten has recorded a total of 37 cases after reporting two new confirmed cases, while Central Kalimantan, which previously recorded zero infections, reported two COVID-19 cases on Friday.In addition to the aforementioned provinces, COVID-19 cases have also been found in Yogyakarta with four cases, West Kalimantan with two, East Kalimantan with 10, Riau Islands with four, North Sulawesi with one, Southeast Sulawesi with three, South Sulawesi with two while Lampung and Riau each recorded one case.Amid all the grim news, Yurianto said that 17 patients had recovered from the disease.“We will send this data to regional health agencies to enable them to conduct further contact tracing of people who have tested positive for the disease,” Yurianto said. (glh)Topics : Indonesia’s death toll from COVID-19 has risen to 32 with 369 cases reported nationwide on Friday, as the novel coronavirus spread to 17 of the country’s provinces, half of the total 34 provinces in the archipelago.Health Ministry Disease Control and Prevention Director General Achmad Yurianto said most fatal cases occurred in Jakarta, which recorded one new death as of Friday, bringing the total fatalities in the capital — the hardest-hit by coronavirus in Indonesia — to 18.West Java, meanwhile, recorded its biggest jump yet to date with six new reported deaths within a day, bringing the total to seven fatalities as of Friday. The death toll in Central Java remained at three, while Bali, Banten, East Java and North Sumatra each had reported one fatality so far.“We confirm that the number of fatalities has increased by seven compared to yesterday’s data [of 25 deaths],” Yurianto said during a press conference on Friday.With 32 fatal cases, Indonesia’s fatality rate from the coronavirus so far stands at 8.6 percent — far higher than the average global mortality rate of about 3.9 percent.A Flourish mapThe government also confirmed 60 new confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. of Friday.last_img read more

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Agency says loud rumble heard in Jakarta not sound of Anak Krakatau. So what was it?

first_imgOfficials at the Anak Krakatau observation post, located 42 kilometers from the volcano, had not heard the rumbling, she said, adding that the sound of the eruption could not possibly reach Greater Jakarta, which was 125 km away, as the eruptions were relatively small.She said officials at the observation post of Mount Gede in Bogor, West Java, and Mount Salak in Sukabumi, West Java, had heard the rumbling. She surmised it may have been the sound of thunderstorms occurring after the Anak Krakatau eruptions.“Not only [officials] at Mount Gede and Mount Salak heard the thunder, there were also thunderstorms around Mount Anak Krakatau at the same time as the eruption because of the current rainy season,” she said.She said the infrasound device installed to record acoustic signals of the mountain had recorded increased activity around 10 to 11 p.m., but the frequency of the sound could not be heard by the human ear.The PVMBG also said that residents of the islands of Java and Sumatra would not be affected by the Anak Krakatau eruption, as the spewing of rocks and lava only occurred around the mountain, adding that the agency had issued a code orange volcano observatory notice for aviation (VONA).Volcanology expert and former Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry geological agency head Surono, however, suggested the sound caused by the eruption could have echoed throughout Greater Jakarta, as there was less activity and noise in the area as a result of large-scale social restrictions over COVID-19.Coincidentally, Friday marked the first day of a partial lockdown in the capital.Topics : The Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation Center (PVMBG) says a loud rumble heard by residents of Greater Jakarta did not come from the Anak Krakatau volcanic eruption on Friday evening, though it does not know what it was.Some internet users in Greater Jakarta said they had heard a loud rumble on Friday midnight till early Saturday morning and assumed that they were hearing the sound of Anak Krakatau after being informed about its eruptions that occurred at 9:58 p.m. and 10:35 p.m.“[The sound] did not come [from Anak Krakatau], but from some other source, but we still cannot determine the source,” PVMBG western volcano mitigation head Nia Khaerani told The Jakarta Post on Saturday.last_img read more

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Indonesians, Malaysians return home via North Sumatra airport

first_imgAs many as 194 Malaysian and Indonesian citizens flew back to their respective homelands on Tuesday via Kualanamu International Airport in Deli Serdang regency, North Sumatra.Sixty nine Indonesians arrived at the airport at around 4 p.m. on a Malaysia Airlines flight.Around 45 minutes later, 125 Malaysians flew home with the same airline, Kualanamu airport spokesperson Mulia Rahman said. Read also: COVID-19: Govt repatriates, isolates more than 500 TKIs from MalaysiaHe added that all recently repatriated citizens would be quarantined in their respective regions to ensure public health and safety.Malaysia Airlines station manager Rahmat Iskandar Dinata said the repatriation of the 125 Malaysians from Sumatra was facilitated by the Malaysian government. “The majority of them are students studying in Medan, Aceh and Padang,” he said.The Indonesian government had previously stated that it had no plans to repatriate Indonesian migrant workers and other citizens living in Malaysia, even though the neighboring Southeast Asian country has imposed a lockdown, effective since March 18, to curb the spread of the virus.The lockdown has reportedly forced thousands of Indonesian workers to voluntarily return home.Unfortunately, not all workers have used legal means to return. Authorities in North Sumatra and Riau Islands recently caught dozens of Indonesian migrant workers attempting to sneak past border authorities while returning from Malaysia. (vny)Topics : The group of Indonesians that returned from Malaysia comprised 13 men, 53 women, two children and a toddler, the majority of whom were migrant workers.Earlier this month, 513 Indonesian domestic workers arrived from Malaysia at same airport.  All returnees were tested for COVID-19 upon arriving at Kualanamu, with all of them testing negative, authorities claimed.”Upon arrival at Kualanamu airport, we checked their body temperatures and sprayed them with disinfectant. They all tested negative for COVID-19,” the head of the Medan Port Health Office, Priagung Adhi Bawono, confirmed separately on Wednesday.last_img read more

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Rp 1.2 billion of contaminated Korean cabbage seeds culled

first_imgRead also: South Korean contaminated enoki mushrooms no longer circulating in markets: MinistryThe seeds were burned at PT. Koreana Seed Indonesia in Kediri, East Java.The more than 500 Agriculture Quarantine Offices in Indonesia have been intensifying efforts to control imported seeds and produce following an increase in imports, the ministry said in a statement.”The agricultural products have to be healthy, safe and suitable for consumption,” Agriculture Quarantine Agency head Ali Jamil said separately. (vny)Topics : The Agriculture Ministry has destroyed roughly 1.5 tons of Chinese cabbage seeds from South Korea that were found to contain two types of soil-borne bacteria harmful to plants: Pseudomonas viridiflava and Pseudomonas cichorii.Musyaffak Fauzi, the head of the Surabaya Agriculture Quarantine Office in East Java, said Pseudomonas viridiflava had yet to be found in Indonesia and the plants that carried it could not be cured through treatment. Therefore, he said, the seeds had to be exterminated.”This is a serious threat to Indonesian agriculture, particularly horticultural crops,” Musyaffak said after overseeing the destruction of Rp 1.2 billion (US$82,050) worth of cabbage seeds on Thursday.last_img read more

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India coronavirus deaths pass 30,000, more than France

first_imgBut many experts say that with testing levels low, the extent of the pandemic across the world’s second-most populous country may be far worse than officially reported.An antibody study commissioned by the government showed this week that almost a quarter of people in the capital New Delhi have had the virus — almost 40 times the official number.Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government imposed one of the world’s strictest lockdowns in late March, but it has been steadily eased to lessen the devastating economic impact of the pandemic.State governments have brought in fresh restrictions as cases soar in Bangalore and away from the big cities in Bihar, West Bengal, Kashmir and parts of Tamil Nadu. India’s death toll from the novel coronavirus overtook France’s on Friday with 30,601 fatalities and nearly 50,000 new cases overnight, official data showed.The death toll is the sixth-biggest behind the US, Brazil, Britain, Mexico and Italy, according to an AFP tally. It has the third-highest caseload with almost 1.3 million infections.In the past 24 hours the country recorded 740 new deaths from the virus and 49,310 fresh infections, according to the health ministry. Topics :center_img Southern Kerala state, earlier hailed as a success story and which has already imposed partial restrictions, may decide on Monday to impose a full statewide lockdown, reports said.last_img read more

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Jobs bill puts spotlight on graft in natural resources sector in Indonesia

first_img–Ardila Syakriah contributed to this report.Topics : Amid rampant corruption in the natural resources sector, the government is proposing centralized licensing and environmental management in the omnibus bill on job creation, in a move that would be a step back for regional autonomy.The bill, which consists of 1,028 pages, aims to revise 79 prevailing laws, including the Spatial Planning Law, Environmental Management Law and Forestry Law.Under the bill, local administrations would be stripped of their power to manage natural resources and the environment and the central government would be the only authority on spatial planning and land, forest and coastal area management. Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi) executive director Nur Hidayati said Amdal had been ineffective in preventing environmental damages because of rampant corruption, but it did not mean that it had to be eliminated.“If it is found to be ineffective, it should be fixed instead. The reason it is ineffective in the first place is because there is no political will to save the environment,” Hidayati said.She said it was critical to protect the environment since Indonesia was prone to natural disasters.The Corruption Eradication Corruption (KPK), through its National Movement to Save Natural Resources (GNP-SDA), has conducted annual research to eradicate graft in the natural resources sector since 2009.One of its recent studies revealed that there was possible corruption during the issuance of Amdal and other environmental permits. In 2018, it was reported that at least 40,000 environmental studies may have been tainted by bribery.The antigraft body estimated that, within a year, Rp 51 trillion had been lost to bribery. In the forestry sector, it costs a company or a group an estimated Rp 688 million to Rp 22 billion a year to obtain a license.The KPK has also investigated 27 corruption cases in the natural resources sector since 2009.KPK spokesperson Ali Fikri said the cases were usually related to kickbacks or other forms of gratuities that local administrations received to process business permits.  “The modus operandi of the cases was similar, namely the abuse of authority to grant permits, which leads to cash transfer [bribes],” Fikri said, adding that he was skeptical that the omnibus bill would put a stop to the illicit practice.The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has investigated 27 corruption cases in the natural resources sector since 2009. (JP/Hengky Wijaya)Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW) estimated that graft in the natural resources sector caused Rp 6 trillion in state losses last year, the highest of any sector.Like Fikri, ICW researcher Egi Primayogha expressed doubt over corruption ending with the central government in charge.“A transfer of authority will not end corruption as long as bureaucracy is still nontransparent, incompetent and slow,” Egi said.For two decades, Indonesia has run under a system in which authorities and budgeting are decentralized, giving regional autonomy to local administrations. The move to decentralize power was aimed to end the development gap between Java and other islands as the result of the highly centralized government under Soeharto.Think tank Regional Autonomy Watch executive director Robert Endi Jaweng said removing licensing powers from local administrations would be against Law No. 23/2014 on regional administrations. The law lists the environment as an area that should be managed under local governments.Robert said that, to end corruption, the central government could issue business permits, while local administrations could remain in charge of issuing environmental, spatial and building permits.”The one that understands the environmental situation in each region is the local administration. Does the central government even have the capacity to supervise all 514 cities and regencies?” he said.Robert said that while the proposed centralized licensing provisions in the omnibus bill should be looked at as an opportunity to eradicate corruption, they should be subject to review.”The other option is the central government improves its ability to supervise the regions. This is important because [corruption cases] might be caused by a lack of guidance and supervision from the central government,” he said.Indonesia Regents Association chairman Abdullah Azwar Anas said the association supported the bill since it aimed to woo investors.“But environmental oversight should be our collective responsibility,” said Anas, who is also the regent of Banyuwangi, East Java.center_img It would cut layers of licensing processes, including the requirement for businesses to obtain an Environmental Impact Analysis (Amdal) document, which is currently issued by local administrations. If the bill is passed into law, the process will be supervised by the central government.Businesses would still be obliged to prevent environmental damages, but they would have to report to the central government, which would hold all supervising duties.Waste-dumping permits are currently acquired through governors, mayors or regents. Under the omnibus bill, the central government would hand out the permits.Environmental restoration funds that companies are required to prepare would have to be deposited at banks selected by the central government. Currently, regional leaders select the banks.last_img read more

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‘Thousands have tried’. Bayern ponder how to stop Messi

first_imgBayern Munich midfielder Leon Goretzka said the German giants are working out how to curb the legendary talents of Barcelona star Lionel Messi ahead of Friday’s Champions League quarter-final.”Thousands of people before me have tried to answer this question,” Goretzka replied Tuesday in Lisbon when asked how to stop Messi.”It is nice – after playing against [Juventus star Cristiano] Ronaldo a few times – to play the other formative player of the last decade. Topics : “That can only be done collectively,” the 25-year-old central midfielder said of Messi, “because he is a gifted footballer”.”I don’t know how, but we have to force our game on them.”Messi scored his 31st goal this season on Saturday and is looking to lift the Champions League for the fifth time in his career with Barcelona.Treble-chasing Bayern, however, have won all 13 games since the coronavirus lockdown restart.center_img They underlined their impressive form on Saturday when Robert Lewandowski, the Champions League’s top scorer, netted twice and created two more in the last 16, second-leg rout of Chelsea to seal a 7-1 thrashing on aggregate.Bayern are chasing the treble having already won an eighth straight Bundesliga title and lifted the German Cup, but Goretzka says Barcelona present a true test.”There is no easy way now. We are here in the sun in Portugal and are preparing for a knockout game in the Champions League,” he said.”We’re really up for it. Knockout matches are great.”While Barcelona are packed with stars alongside Messi, Goretzka says Bayern are far more than just Lewandowski’s goals. “At the moment, we’re playing as a unit, in addition to the quality of the individual players.”We have a clear plan in hand and our intensity without the ball can make the difference.” But he admitted being wary of Arturo Vidal, Barca’s ex-Bayern midfielder.”I got to know him for a few weeks and played against him many times. He has a first-class mentality with amazing fitness,” added Goretzka.”I noticed that during fitness tests – which I took next to him – he can go beyond the pain threshold.”last_img read more

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