Haze handling in Riau should not become regular agenda: President

"The intensity of the operations must be increased and I hope they can be finished in three weeks," Yudhoyono said.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the work to prevent land fires in the Riau province was conducted systematically and involved all parties, so the handling of land fires should not become a regular agenda.

"April through October (would be dry season), the root problem that causes the land fires must be tackled, and it is the only way to overcome the haze problem in Riau," the president said when opening a limited cabinet meeting at the Presidential Office on Wednesday evening.

The president when meeting with fire fighters in the Riau province on Saturday, March 15, asked for an increase in fire fighting operations and urged fire fighters to extinguish the blazes within three weeks.

"The intensity of the operations must be increased and I hope they can be finished in three weeks," he said.

The cabinet meeting, which took place at the Presidential Office starting 03.00 p.m., also discussed Malaysias request for help to search for its missing airplane.

Also present at the meeting were Vice President Boediono, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Djoko Suyanto, Coordinating Minister for Peoples Welfare Agung Laksono, Finance Minister Chatib Basri, Home Affairs Minister Gamawan Fauzi, National Police Chief Gen. Sutarman and National Defense Forces Chief General Moeldoko. (*)

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