Jakarta (ANTARA) - Education, Culture, Research, and Technology Minister Nadiem Makarim stated that it is a top priority to save the artifacts and collections at the National Museum after a fire broke out on Saturday (September 16) evening.

"Our top priority now is to save as many artifacts and historical objects as possible from the rooms affected by the fire," Makarim said in a news conference at the National Museum here on Sunday morning.

He said that his side has coordinated with the museum management and experts to form a joint team to record the impacted or damaged museum collection. The joint team will work with the police and the fire department, he added.

"We will save what can be saved," the minister said.

He emphasized that the team will first pay attention to the safety of the museum building and rooms that caught on fire.

"We cannot enter the building right now to inventory the collection because the firefighters said that it is not safe yet. Safety is number one priority," he explained.

He also expressed regret that the National Museum will be closed for a while.

"Of course, we also asked the police to immediately investigate what the cause of the fire was," he said.

Earlier, Chief of Central Jakarta Police Office, Senior Commissioner Komarudin stated that officers of the Central Jakarta Fire Handling and Rescue Agency had successfully extinguished the fire at the National Museum on Saturday night.

"Four rooms in Building A of the National Museum caught on fire and by 10 p.m. local time, the fire was already extinguished," Komarudin said.

Chief of the Central Jakarta Fire Handling and Rescue Agency Asril Rizal suspected that the fire was triggered by a short circuit that occurred in the museum renovation project area.

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Translator: Lintang P, Kenzu
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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