Dengue fever cases on rise in Indonesia

            By Mahmut Atanur</p>  <p>JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) - A outbreak of dengue fever claimed eight lives in the East Sumba district of East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), according to local media on Wednesday.</p>  <p>The number of those infected who were treated at a public hospital reached 338, Indonesia’s Antara news agency said, citing Chrisnawan Try Haryantana, head of the East Sumba health office.</p>  <p>The total number of people killed since 2019 due to the mosquito-borne disease in NTT province hit 18.</p>  <p>The health office, along with the regional authorities, have intensified efforts to prevent the spread of the disease in the region, it added.</p>  <p>More than 15,000 dengue fever cases at 145 fatalities were registered in Indonesia as of Feb. 1, according to the country's health ministry.</p>  <p>Earlier, the health ministry said that the highest number of dengue cases, more than 3,070, was reported in East Java province, with 52 people dead.</p>  <p>&quot;The ministry recorded 53,075 cases of dengue fever in 2018, some 68,407 cases in 2017, and 204,171 cases in 2016,&quot; the news agency said.</p>  <p>Mosquitoes carrying malaria and dengue appear more frequently especially in the rainy season between October and April, while scientists warn high temperatures and prolonged rains cause an increase in mosquitoes breeding.</p>  <p>Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection, which is found in tropical and sub-tropical climates worldwide, mostly in urban and semi-urban areas. The infection causes flu-like illness, and occasionally develops into a potentially lethal complication called severe dengue, according to the World Health Organization.</p>  <p>In Indonesia, dengue fever killed 1,600 people in 2016, and nearly 500 more in 2017.</p>  <p><br>

*Jeyhun Aliyev from Ankara contributed to this story

Indonesia: 193 Bangladeshis found locked up in house

By Mahmut Atanur

JAKARTA (AA) – Indonesian authorities discovered a total of 193 Bangladeshis locked up in a house on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, local media reports said late Thursday.

National daily Kompas wrote that police found the irregular migrants – all men in their twenties — during a police raid of a building in the city of Medan, northern Sumatra on Tuesday.

Human traffickers had lured the men with the promise of taking them to Malaysia but had not given them food or water for some time, the newspaper said.

Local authorities said that some of the men had been held in the house for around four months.

After processing, the migrants will be sent back to their home countries, said reports.

US blocks UN statement on Hebron observer force

            By Servet Gunerigok</p>  <p>WASHINGTON (AA) - The United States on Wednesday blocked a UN Security Council statement expressing regret over Israel’s decision to expel an international observer force from the West Bank city of Hebron. </p>  <p>Kuwait and Indonesia asked the council to issue a joint statement expressing concern over Israel's decision to eject the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) after deciding not to renew its mandate. The force had been monitoring the city for the past 20 years.</p>  <p>&quot;We will not allow the presence of an international force that operates against us,&quot; Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last month, without elaborating.</p>  <p>The proposed statement suggested Israeli settlements in Palestine breached international law and called for a two-state solution. </p>  <p>Composed of 64 international observers from Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy and Turkey, the TIPH was established by UN Security Council Resolution 904. </p>  <p>The resolution was adopted following Hebron’s Ibrahimi Mosque massacre in 1994, when Jewish extremist Baruch Goldstein gunned down 29 Palestinian worshippers. </p>  <p>Hebron is currently home to some 160,000 Palestinian Muslims and around 500 Jewish settlers. The latter live in a series of Jewish-only enclaves heavily guarded by Israeli troops.

Indonesia: Protestors gather in front of Indian embassy

             By Mahmut Atanur</p>    <p>JAKARTA (AA) - A group of protestors on Wednesday held a demonstration in front of India's embassy in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, marking the Kashmir Solidarity Day falling on Feb. 5</p>    <p>The protestors chanted slogans against India and carried banners reading: &quot;India, get out of Kashmir&quot;, &quot;Stop killing people of Kashmir&quot; and &quot;Free Kashmir&quot;.</p>    <p>Activists asked the Indian government to stop the military operations and human right violations in Kashmir.</p>    <p>Azam Khan, the head of Kashmir Solidarity Organization, said that India should give the Kashmiri people a chance to choose their future.</p>    <p>Khan also said the people in the region should choose their fate with a referendum promised by the United Nations.</p>    <p>He also criticized the Indian embassy officials for rejecting to accept the meeting with protestors.</p>    <p>The demonstration, under the tight security measures of police ended, ended without any incident.</p>    <p> </p>  <p>- Kashmir Solidarity Day</p>    <p>Pakistan began observing Feb. 5 as Kashmir Solidarity Day in 1990.</p>    <p>The day is an annual demonstration of Pakistan’s support for the people of Indian-administered Kashmir.</p>    <p>Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. A small sliver of Kashmir is also held by China.</p>    <p>Since they were partitioned in 1947, the two countries have fought three wars -- in 1948, 1965 and 1971 -- two of them over Kashmir.</p>    <p>Also, in Siachen glacier in northern Kashmir, Indian and Pakistani troops have fought intermittently since 1984. A cease-fire came into effect in 2003.</p>    <p>Some Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.</p>    <p>According to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.

Powerful earthquake hits Indonesia

By Rhany Chairunissa Rufinaldo

JAKARTA (AA) – A 6.1-magnitude earthquake hit Indonesia's North Sumatra province early Tuesday, the country's meteorology and geophysics agency said.

The quake struck at 2.29 a.m. local time (1929GMT) with the epicenter located 130 kilometers (80.8 miles) southeast of South Nias at a depth of 11 kilometers (6.8 miles) under the sea bed.

There have been no reports of casualties and no tsunami warnings have been issued.

Indonesia experienced a number of natural disasters last year, including earthquakes in parts of Lombok Island.

The country lies within the Pacific Ocean’s "Ring of Fire," where tectonic plates collide and cause frequent seismic and volcanic activity.

Last September, a 7.4-magnitude earthquake struck the country's Sulawesi Island, triggering a tsunami that towered up to 10 feet (3 meters) high and killed more than 2,000 people.

Indonesia waits for Philippines inquiry to name bombers

By Mahmut Atanur

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) – Indonesia awaits for the Philippines to end their investigation over a recent church bombing for the identification of bombers, Indonesian foreign minister said on Saturday.

Retno Marsudi said that she has contacted the authorities in the Philippines after reports that the suspects in the twin bomb attacks at a church in the Philippines' southern Sulu province were Indonesian nationals.

At least 27 people have been killed and several others injured after the bomb attacks in the country last Sunday.

Marsudi said that they were waiting for suspects’ identification.

On Friday, the Philippine interior minister said that an Indonesian couple was behind the church attack.

Indonesia: Dengue fever kills over 100 people

             By Mahmut Atanur

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) – A dengue fever outbreak has killed over 100 people in Indonesia since the beginning of 2019, according to the local media.

In January, the highest death toll was recorded with 41 people in the East Java province, followed with 13 people in North Sulawesi, while another 12 people lost their lives in East Nusa Tenggara, the local daily Jakarta Post reported on Sunday citing an official.

At least nine fatalities were registered in Central Java, one in West Java and another seven in South Sulawesi, the daily quoted Siti Nadia Tarmizi, the director for vector-borne and zoonotic diseases in the Health Ministry, as saying.

The disease has also claimed lives in 16 provinces, she said, adding that nearly 10,000 dengue cases were registered in 372 cities across the archipelago.

Some regions in Central Kalimantan, East Nusa Tenggara and North Sulawesi province have declared an emergency situation, according to the official.

Mentioning a significant rise in dengue cases in some provinces compared to the last year, Tarmizi said that spraying and insecticide works are being carried out in the streets and neighborhoods in order to prevent the disease.

Mosquitoes carrying malaria and dengue appear more frequently especially in the rainy season between October and April, while the scientists warn that high temperatures and prolonged rains cause an increase in mosquitoes breed.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection, which is found in tropical and sub-tropical climates worldwide, mostly in urban and semi-urban areas. The infection causes flu-like illness, and occasionally develops into a potentially lethal complication called severe dengue, according to the World Health Organization.

In Indonesia, the dengue fever has killed some 600 people in 2016, and some 500 others in 2017.

Death toll rises to 26 in Indonesia floods, landslides

             By Riyaz ul Khaliq </p>    <p>ANKARA (AA) - Death toll has risen to 26 after torrential rains triggered massive landslides in central Indonesia, local media reported Thursday.</p>    <p>According to local news agency Antara, rains hit at least ten districts in the south of Sulawesi Island, including provincial capital Makassar of South Sulawesi province.</p>    <p>Thousands of people were stuck in the region and evacuated from their homes, it added.</p>    <p>The news agency said that floods and landslides left 26 people, including two infants, dead and 24 others missing.</p>    <p>At least 3,914 families were affected and over 3,000 people are living in temporary shelters while 46 others were admitted to local health facilities for treatment, the daily said.</p>    <p>The floods and landslides damaged houses, government buildings, schools, and bridges, according to the reports. </p>    <p>An official from Indonesia’s National Agency for Disaster Management said the search and rescue mission is underway to trace the missing victims. </p>    <p>Landslides and flooding are common in Indonesia, especially during the monsoon season between October and April, when rain lashes the vast tropical archipelago.

Floods, landslides in Indonesia kill 6

By Mahmut Atanur

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) – Landslides and floods on an island in Indonesia have claimed six lives, local outlets said on Wednesday.

According to Metro TV, heavy rains in the southern Gowa region of Sulawesi Island led to the floods and landslides.

Search and rescue work continues in the region.

Floods and landslides in Indonesia often occur as excessive rainfall hits the country due to its tropical climate.

UPDATE – Powerful earthquake hits Indonesia

UPDATES WITH SECOND EARTHQUAKE

By Mahmut Atanur

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) – A 6.2-magnitude earthquake hit Indonesia's East Nusa Tenggara province early Tuesday, the country's meteorology and geophysics agency said.

The epicenter was located 64 miles (103 kilometers) southwest of Sumba Barat district of the province at a depth of 6 miles (10 kilometers).

There have been no reports of deaths or injuries and no tsunami warnings have been issued.

The area was rattled by a second earthquake later Tuesday with a magnitude of 6.7. Its epicenter was 74 miles (120 kilometers) southwest of Sumba Barat at the same depth of the first one.

Indonesia experienced a number of natural disasters last year, including earthquakes in parts of Lombok Island.

The country lies within the Pacific Ocean’s "Ring of Fire," where tectonic plates collide and cause frequent seismic and volcanic activity.

Last September, a 7.4-magnitude earthquake struck the country's Sulawesi Island, triggering a tsunami that towered up to 10 feet (3 meters) high and killed more than 2,000 people.