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SG Indonesia says sorry for haze in Malaysia, Singapore

Property Here - Tuesday, June 25, 2013

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The Indonesian government has apologised for the haze in Malaysia and Singapore, caused by forest and peatland fires in Sumatra.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono yesterday said: “As the president, I apologise for what has happened and hope for understanding from our friends in Singapore and Malaysia. For sure, what has taken place is not on purpose.” 

Areas in Indonesia still affected by the fires such as Riau, Jambi and Bengkulu have been declared as districts under disaster emergency. Authorities have also deployed all the manpower it can mobilise to combat the crisis. 

Mr Yudhoyono also promised that Indonesia would put out every fire in Sumatra with the help of cloud-seeding planes and fire-fighting personnel including those from the armed forces.

Moreover, the President also reprimanded several Indonesian government officials for revealing the names of plantation companies that allegedly started the fires.

“From what I monitor daily, there were statements made by some officials which according to me should not have been delivered as such.” 

“Even if the companies were negligent, it is not necessary to name them. Or the fact that they are owned by our neighbouring countries. What is more important now is to focus on overcoming the fire disaster that has dragged on for a week,” he added. 

As of yesterday, visibility in Kuala Lumpur remained poor due to the haze. The government also suspended classes in the capital and in Selangor. But air quality in Singapore improved thanks to a change in the wind direction.

Image: Haze in Singapore