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Mahouts of the elephant Flying Squad at the Tesso Nilo National Park had to evacuate the trained elephants to a safer place, as they showed signs of stress due to a forest fire that gutted the conservation area in Pelalawan District.

"The elephants have shown a change in behavior, because the fire has made them uncomfortable," chief of the Flying Squad Team, Erwin Daulay, told Antara here on Tuesday.

The Tesso Nilo National Park is a conservation forest, a home for the Sumatran endemic elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus).

The TNTN area was extended in 2009 to 83,068 hectares, from only 38,576 hectares in 2004, by including the limited production forest.

However, massive illegal encroachment of the conservation area has changed its landscape into palm oil plantations.

Daulay said the forest fire in the conservation area since August 1 had released a thick smog and it began to approach the Flying Squad camp in Lubuk Kembang Bunga Village. The fire was started at the Sungai Tapah area.

The Flying Squad, a team of captive elephants and handlers (mahouts) that help local farmers reduce elephant conflicts, comprised five mature elephants and three calves.

"The fire is getting wilder and has been approaching the camp since Friday, August 9. Finally, we evacuated the elephants to some 500 meters from the camp into the forest because the wind has blown the smog to the camp," he added.

Deputy chief of Pelalawan police Commissioner, Rezi Darmawan, said the forest fire in the village is under control, thanks to the joint efforts of the police, military, the fire brigades, WWF Riau and some companies.

However, the authority still detected hotspots in Kusuma Village, he said.

Head of the Tesso Nilo National Park, Halasan Tulus, said the fire in the conservation forest occurred sporadically, especially in the extended areas, which have reported human activities.

The extreme dry season, he said, has made the conservation area prone to fires. However, there is little chance for natural causes to ignite the fire as the area gutted is mostly occupied by people.

"It can be caused by cigarettes or the clearing of land," he said. 


President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has instructed that the Indonesia Pavilion at the Expo 2020 Dubai must be futuristic and promote the country's culture, Trade Minister, Enggartiasto Lukita, said.

"There are several guidelines from the President and the Vice President, (that the pavilion must) mirror Indonesia today and in the future. Hence, it should be more futuristic, while introducing our culture and cultural wealth," the minister told the press at the Presidential Office, here, on Tuesday, following a limited cabinet meeting chaired by President Jokowi.

The meeting discussed preparations for the Expo 2020 Dubai by highlighting the position of the Indonesian Pavilion in enhancing partnerships.

Related news: Government discusses preparations for Expo 2020 Dubai
Related news: Indonesia ready to participate in World Expo 2020 in Dubai

Jokowi said that Indonesia's promotion activities should target potential foreign partners, Lukita added.

The opportunity must be seized optimally, especially for trade, tourism, and investment in the Middle-East market.

The government will involve private companies such as automotive industry, Astra.

The pavilion will also feature the development of crude palm oil industry in Indonesia and forest preservation.

During the meeting, Jokowi highlighted the need for meticulous preparations for Indonesia's participation in an attempt to seize the opportunity.

"The preparations must be detailed. The design of the pavilion must reflect the face of Indonesia as a big country," the president noted.

The president expounded that the location of the Indonesian pavilion must also be precise and strategic. This is essential for building trust and value from potential partners.

"The Dubai Expo is the third-largest event after the World Cup and the Olympics. Hence, it is an expo of technological discovery and industrial innovation, with approximately 190 countries in attendance," Jokowi remarked.

Director General of National Export Development of the Trade Ministry, Arlinda, had earlier noted that the Indonesian pavilion will feature the sub-theme, "opportunity", and the main theme, "Connecting Mind Creating the Future".

A total of 25 million people are projected to attend the World Expo 2020 Dubai in the United Arab Emirates from October 20, 2020, to April 10, 2021.

The Indonesian Pavilion will be built after groundbreaking on September 9, 2019.

Several officials attending the meeting comprising Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Darmin Nasution; Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs, Wiranto; Minister of Finance, Sri Mulyani Indrawati; Minister of Trade, Enggartiasto Lukita; Minister of Industry, Airlangga Hartarto; Minister of Home Affairs, Tjahjo Kumolo; Minister of Education and Culture, Muhadjir Effendy; Minister of Communication and Information, Rudiantara; Chairman of the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), Thomas Trikasih Lembong; Creative Economy Agency (Bekraf) head, Triawan Munaf; Presidential Chief of Staff, Moeldoko; and Head of Presidential Secretariat, Heru Budi Hartono.


In tourism sector, Indonesian Diaspora in the world is a strategic partner of the government. They want to develop Indonesia and want to do anything for the development of the tourism sector in Indonesia. It was stated by Mark Gerald Eman, President of Indonesian Diaspora Network-Global (IDN-Global) at the 5th Congress of the Indonesian Diaspora and Tourism Sectoral Session at the Ministry of Tourism, Jakarta, Tuesday (13/8). Gerald Eman added that the synergy between the diaspora and the Ministry of Tourism will further develop Indonesian tourism.


"Diaspora throughout the world is a strategic partner for the government. We want to build Indonesia, we want to face difficulty and pain. Whatever we do is indeed from the deep of our sincere heart and we are committed to developing Indonesia so that our tourism will become more successful and greater," said Gerald..

Furthermore Mark Gerald Eman said that the key to the success and progress of Indonesian tourism is the synergy between the Indonesian diaspora and the Ministry of Tourism. Gerald said that diaspora throughout the world can introduce Indonesia, and that can be proven through various activities they make in their respective countries. He gave an example of what the United States diaspora did in promoting Indonesian tourism and culinary, namely by opening an Indonesia restaurant called Wonderful Indonesia. (VOI / ACT INS / AHM)


The Indonesian diaspora could help the government develop the country’s human capital, Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno LP Marsudi has said. "Now, how could the Indonesian Government collaborate with the diaspora? The diaspora could become agents of Indonesian human capital development," the minister said here Saturday in her opening remarks during the Fifth Congress of Indonesian Diaspora (CID-5).

The Indonesian Government has decided to prioritize human resources development (HRD) during the next five years, and the diaspora makes up a significant component of this, she noted.

"HRD will become a priority of the Indonesian Government. I quote the President as saying that human resources development is a key for the Indonesian development in the future. Besides, there is an instruction from the President to support the Indonesian diaspora," she said.

To involve the diaspora in human capital development in Indonesia, there should first be a database on them and their skills.

With the help of the database, it would be easy to locate and identify experts from among the diaspora that could help develop education and particularly vocational schools in the country.

The three-day CID-5 is being organized in Jakarta, beginning Saturday, August 10 and concluding August 13, 2019. "The theme of this year's conference is 'Empowering Indonesia's Human Capital', Indonesian Diaspora Network Global (IDN-Global) President Mark Gerald Eman, said during a press conference in Jakarta Monday, August 5.

The theme was chosen keeping in mind the fact that human resource development is the key to Indonesia's future.

The theme was also in line with President Joko Widodo's instructions regarding human resources and the development of the diaspora, Deputy Chairman of IDN Global Said Zaidansyah, stated.

"One of the main agendas of the Diaspora Congress is the development of human resources in accordance with the instructions of President Joko Widodo during his remarks in Sentul where he also highlighted the issue of human resource development," Zaidansyah said.

The congress could provide a platform to discuss the issues and challenges related to human resources in Indonesia and the challenges they face.

The conference is expected to be the biggest meeting of the Indonesian diaspora and as many as 5,000 are expected to attend the event.