Source: UN Resource Center Ambon
Date: 20 Sep 2001
Unofficial summary of local press articles 19-20 Sep 2001
* Latuconsina not afraid to deal with terrorists * The Governor of Maluku, Saleh
Latuconsina, stated that he is not afraid of terrorist threats, and rejected the idea that Ambon
would become a target of terrorist attacks because of what happened in New York last week.
However, he said he had anticipated this by deporting four unidentified foreigners who came
without proper identification and purposes to Ambon.
* Mysterious shooter in Batu Gantung * Yesterday (18/9) at 18:00, a resident of upper Batu
Gantung, Ade, was shot by two unidentified people, forcing him to be hospitalised. According
to a friend of the victim who was at the scene, two attackers called Ade when they patrolled the
area and suddenly shot at him with a pistol. After shooting him the two disappeared. No further
information is available of the existence of the attackers.
* Masohi conducive because of communication * Chief of Resort Police Office in Masohi,
Kadir Prayitno, reported that situation in Masohi is conducive now, because the Police has
facilitated communication between the two communities - Muslims and Christians. However,
this is taking place after people realised how important it is to communicate with each other.
Therefore, he hoped that people in Ambon could pay attention to this and do the same.
* Maluku needs peace education * The Governor of Maluku, Saleh Latuconsina, in the basic
training of Management Conflict held by UNICEF Ambon, conveyed the message that people in
Maluku need peace education, as it is important for people to realise that conflict brings
nothing but suffering. This training was conducted from 18 to 20 September and attended by
local NGOs, representatives of the local government, religious leaders, and teachers in Maluku.
Latuconsina hoped that through this training, participants could become better human
resources who would be able to counsel people in the communities.
* IDPs in Buru decrease * Acting head of Buru district, Rusdi Sangadji, SH, reported that at
present IDP numbers in the area are decreasing as the conditions have become more
conducive. He said it has decreased from 10,317 persons to 9,761 in IDP camps throughout
the island. Based on this fact, he hoped that IDPs living in Halong, Ambon Island, could go
back to their homes in Buru.
* 12,429 Muslim IDP families refuse to go home * According to sources, 12,429 Muslim
IDP families or 66,150 Muslim IDPs from Halmahera living in Ternate, North Maluku, refuse to
go back to their homes. This resulted in new problems, as Christian IDPs from Ternate living in
North Sulawesi also refuse to go back to the Ternate if Muslims are living in their houses.
Therefore, the Government of North Maluku should find a solution to this problem.
* Increasing number of IDPs not logical * The Governor of Maluku said that it is not logical
that the number of IDPs in Maluku is increasing, because based on the facts conditions in
Maluku are calmer than before. He reported that IDP data two months ago indicated a total of
240,000 displaced, and now 397,500 persons or one quarter of the Maluku population.
Therefore, he ordered city government and district authorities to recalculate IDP data in their
areas to get an accurate number of IDPs in Maluku.
* MTB uses donation from Japan * Head of West Southeast Maluku (MTB) district, Drs.
Japie Sahetapy, reported that the district has used funds from Japan in the amount of USD
90,032 to support the return transportation of IDPs from Bacan and Sanana, North Maluku,
living in the MTB since January 1999. He said these funds were very useful in terms of
assisting people in need.
* Mayor forms Task Force for Supervision of Foreigners * Mayor of Ambon City, Drs. M.J.
Papilaja, MS, said he had formed a task force for supervision of foreigners. This task force will
be set up at the entrance of Ambon Island, namely at Pattimura airport, Yos Sudarso Harbour,
and Halong Naval Base Port, to control the incoming and outgoing of outsiders, and to find out
their purpose of visiting Maluku. He reported that this task force started their duty last week
and was able to identify a Saudi Arabian man who came through Yos Sudarso Harbour two
* Medicines from "Maluku Help" yet to be distributed * According to sources at Bhakti
Rahayu hospital, 20 boxes of medicines that were received from a Dutch NGO called "Maluku
Help" have not been distributed to IDPs in the hospital. The sources also added that the owner
of the hospital, dr. Wayan Suastana, brought half of the medicines to Bali, without explanations
to the staff. Meanwhile, two representatives from the particular NGO said it is true that they
have donated 20 boxes to the hospital, but have no idea about how it is distributed to IDPs.
* SMU 45 lacks facility and infrastructure * Head of Yayasan 45, Dra. Ny. HK. Titahena/S,
said in order to follow up the meeting between the Municipal Government and heads of private
education agencies in Ambon, she had sent a letter to the head of Maluku Education
Department to request assistance regarding teachers, classrooms, and sport supplies. She
hoped that the Education Department could fulfil the request, as it would support the study
process at the school.
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