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West Java Governor, M Ridwan Kamil., Bandung – A total of 30 young ulemas from different parts of West Java Province passed the English Program for Ulemas, and they would be sent to campaign for a peaceful and moderate Islam at international forums in the future, West Java Governor M Ridwan Kamil said.

They were selected from 265 ulemas who registered for the program. In the first batch, 30 young ulemas passed the program, co-organized by the West Java provincial government and the United Kingdom Embassy in Jakarta, he said here on Thursday (11/4/2019).

Speaking at the program’s closing ceremony, Kamil said he would motivate the alumni of the English Program for Ulemas to use their improved proficiency in English to help their colleagues in their respective cities and towns.

“The purpose of this program is to help the ulemas in West Java become messengers of peaceful Islam to the world,” he said, adding that the program was aimed at improving the English proficiency of the ulemas before sending them to overseas inter-religious forums.

The UK Embassy in Jakarta and the West Java provincial government have been studying that within three to six months from now, the alumni of this English program would be sent to the United Kingdom.

“Thus, a process for building a dialogue on peaceful Islam, as well as portraying the image of a peaceful Islam in Indonesia and West Java to those in Europe through the United Kingdom, will begin,” Ridwan Kamil said.

In addition to the English Program for Ulemas, the West Java provincial government would continue its collaborative programs with the UK Embassy in the future, including the English Program for Bureaucrats.

Meanwhile, British Ambassador to Indonesia Moazzam Malik highlighted the significance of this English Program for Ulemas, especially now that the world is digitally well connected.

Indonesia was expected to play a global role in promoting interreligious peace, he said, adding that Indonesia could become a good example for both Muslims and non-Muslims all over the world in meeting the rights of minorities. (nan)

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Our cars were gutted in the collision involving 21 vehicles at the Cipularang toll road's KM 91+400., Purwakarta – The number of people who died following a multiple-vehicle collision at the Cipularang toll road, Purwakarta, West Java, has now risen to eight, according to a local police chief.

“After the identification process, it has been confirmed that eight people were killed in the traffic accident,” Adjunct Senior Commissioner Matrius, chief of the Purwakarta Police, said here on Monday (2/9/2019).

Several of them died instantly, others died of burn injuries, while still others were injured in the accident.

The casualties were taken to nearby hospitals, namely the Bayu Asih Public Hospital, the Siloam Hospital and the Thamrin Hospital in Purwakarta.

The Thamrin Hospital Purwakarta received 31 victims, including 24 injured people and seven who were declared dead; Siloam Purwakarta Hospital received one casualty who was declared dead and Bayu Asih Purwakarta Public Hospital treated four injured people.

Four cars were gutted in the collision involving 21 vehicles at the Cipularang toll road’s KM 91+400.

“There were four vehicles comprising three private cars and one truck, which were gutted because of the accident,” Matrius said.

Apart from the cars, the vehicles involved in the collision included trucks and buses, Adjunct Commissioner Ricki Adisaputro, head of the traffic section of the Purwakarta Police, said earlier.

The pile-up caused severe traffic jams on the toll road that connects Jakarta and Bandung, West Java. (fra)

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A fire razed the Mount Pogor forest in Malati Village, Naringgul Sub-district, Cianjur District, West Java Province, on Aug 19, 2019., Cianjur – The Mount Pogor forest area, spanning 1,500 meters in Malati Village, Naringgul Sub-district, Cianjur District, West Java Province, was destroyed by fire on Monday evening.

Several officers of the Naringgul authorities were quick to reach the location to extinguish the fire after receiving a report on it from local villagers, Adam, an eyewitness, noted here on Tuesday (20/8/2019).

“Luckily, the fire did not spread deep into the forest but only razed the perimeter of the forest. I spotted a quite big fire from the Ujung Parakan road where the blaze began,” he noted.

Asep Asbo, a local territorial police member, remarked that the fire broke out at block 24 of Mount Pogor, Cikondang Kampong, near Parakan Telu kampong located at the border of a protected forest supervised by the Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA).

“The fire arose from the middle and spread to the other side that is dry. The fire was most likely triggered by thatches that caught fire due to the blazing sun,” he stated.

It took two hours for the officers and local villagers to extinguish the fire owing to the difficulty in finding water nearby.

“Today, we and officers of the Naringgul Police Office will investigate the cause of the fire, and in the evening, we will patrol the forest area to prevent any recurrence of the fire,” he noted.

Indonesia is currently reeling from an acute dry spell triggered by the El-Nino natural phenomenon that has led to a water crisis and forest fires in several provinces.

Eight provinces in Indonesia are prone to forest fires, but only six have declared an emergency status for forest fires, Director of Forest Fire Mitigation Raffles B. Panjaitan of the Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry stated.

The six provinces are Riau, with the emergency status declared from Feb 19 to Oct 31, or 255 days; West Kalimantan (from Feb 12 to Dec 31, or 323 days); South Sumatra (March 8-Oct 31, or 237 days); Central Kalimantan (May 28-Aug 26, or 91 days); South Kalimantan (June 1-Oct 31, or 153 days); and Jambi (July 23-Oct 20, or 90 days). (amf)

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The fire was spotted for the first time at Gua Walet (Swallow Cave) block on August 7, 2019, at 1 p.m. local time., Kuningan, West Java – A fire destroyed 343 hectares of forest area, home to the edelweiss flower, in Mount Ciremai Kuningan District, West Java Province.

“The area gutted is some 343 hectares,” Agus Mauludin, acting head of the Kuningan Disaster Mitigation Office (BPBD), said here on Tuesday (13/8/2019).

The area is located at an altitude between 2,600 and 3,078 MDPL.

The fire was spotted for the first time at Gua Walet (Swallow Cave) block on August 7, 2019, at 1 p.m. local time.

On August 13, the fire was completely put out, he added.

The forest fire fighting team carried out mop-up activities from 6 a.m. until 3 p.m. every day for several days to make sure there was no more fire or smoke on Mount Ciremai, he noted.

In addition to Mount Ciremai in West Java, Mount Sumbing in Wonosobo District, Central Java and Mount Arjono in Batu Municipality, and East Java Province were also on fire.

A joint team conducted a thorough search of Mount Sumbing in Wonosobo District, Central Java Province, to ensure that a fire raging in the mountains forest area on Sunday afternoon (August 11) was completely extinguished.

“Some 100 personnel comprising officers of the Wonosobo Disaster Mitigation Office (BPBD), the North Kedu Forestry Office, Wonosobo police and military officers, as well as volunteers have been combing the area since Monday morning,” Agus Wibowo, acting spokesman of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), stated in Jakarta on Monday (August 12).

A wildfire razed a protected forest area in Banyumudal Village, Sapuran Sub-district, in the Mount Sumbing area on Sunday afternoon. The fire was later put out. On Monday morning, however, smoke was spotted again near the area.

Indonesia has been experiencing a severe dry season that has triggered forest fires on the islands of Sumatra, Kalimantan, and Java.

Last year, the prolonged dry season had triggered wildfires in forest areas located on the slopes of several mountains in the provinces of Central, East, and West Java. Mount Merbabu, Mount Sumbing, Mount Slamet, and Mount Sindoro in Central Java Province; Mount Argopuro and Mount Sadran in East Java Province; Mount Ciremai in West Java Province; and Mount Lawu located on the border of the provinces of Central and East Java. (vir)

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