Fri, 09 Aug 2002

Minister rapped over dredgers

JAKARTA: The House of Representatives criticized maritime affairs and fisheries minister Rochmin Dahuri on Thursday for releasing seven foreign dredgers impounded in Riau waters last month, which had illegally taken sand from Indonesian maritime territory.

Member of House Commission II Sayuti Rahawarin said Rochmin had no authority to fine and release the dredgers, and that they should have been handed over to the police or state prosecutors for further investigation.

"What authority does he have? He has no right to fine and release the dredgers. We suspect that there is something fishy behind the action," Sayuti was quoted by Antara as saying.

Last month the Navy arrested seven foreign boats while dredging sea sand in Riau waters. The Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries later established a team to question dredger crews but released them after they were fined. -- Antara

RI slow to act on gender studies

JAKARTA: Indonesia has produced many studies about gender issues, but has fallen short of implementing them, a gender analyst said on Thursday.

"We are OK in producing gender studies, but the implementation is weak due to many social and cultural barriers," head of the center for education and training at Bogor Institute of Agriculture Aida Vitalaya was quoted by Antara as saying on the sidelines of a seminar in Lampung on Thursday.

However, Aida said, local governments had now begun paying more attention to gender issues than they did in the New Order era.

Lampung and Central Java have been chosen by the Asian Development Bank as pilot locations for gender-issue projects. The bank has committed some US$40 million this year alone to the projects. --Antara

Six Sri Lankans to be tried

JAKARTA: Six Sri Lankans, arrested recently in Lasiana Beach in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara for illegally entering Indonesia, will be taken to court soon.

"They have to be taken to court for falsifying immigration documents in order to enter Indonesia illegally," East Nusa Tenggara Police chief Brig. Gen. Pol. Jacki Uly told reporters on Thursday.

According to Jacki, three of them had fake passports, while three others entered Indonesia illegally without passing through the immigration office.

The six Sri Lankans were reportedly planning to sneak into Australia as illegal immigrants. -- Antara

Japan to aid RI over environment

JAKARTA: Japan will offer an aid package to help Indonesia and six other Asian countries lower greenhouse gas emissions and stem global warming over the next few years.

Environment ministry official Soichiro Seki said Tokyo's proposal would mostly consist of training and joint research projects in antipollution measures for Indonesia, China, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Details are to be worked out in talks with each country after the plan is unveiled at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa, later this month, Seki said. He declined to say how much Tokyo planned to spend. --AFP