Minggu, 25 September 2016

Austrian woman among two people killed by Indonesia ferry blast

DENPASAR, Indonesia, Sept 15 (Reuters) - An explosion on a ferry carrying 35 tourists between the Indonesian resort islands of Bali and Lombok killed two people on Thursday and injured several, police said. The Austrian Foreign Ministry said an Austrian woman was among the dead. Earlier reports had said the two casualties were a Dutch citizen and an Indonesian.

"Up to now, two people have died, but I don't know the details of their identities," said district police chief Sugeng, who, like many Indonesians, uses only one name. Several injured tourists were being treated in hospital. Police denied reports of a bomb attack, saying instead that they suspected a gas cylinder explosion. "We confirm there was no bomb on board," Sugeng said. "The explosion happened because of ... a gas cylinder close to the engine." Bali and neighbouring Lombok are two of Indonesia's most popular holiday destinations. (Reporting by Fergus Jensen and Reuters stringer in Denpasar; Additional reporting by Shadia Nasralla in Vienna; Writing by Kanupriya Kapoor; Editing by Nick Macfie and Robin Pomeroy)

Sabtu, 24 September 2016

Aussies finally arrive home from Bali

More than 850 people have made it back to Australia from Bali as flying conditions improve around Denpasar Airport.  

Although Mt Rinjani in Lombok continues to erupt, the ash cloud around the airport has moved away. Jetstar has flown holidaymakers back home on Wednesday during a short window of clear flying conditions, while

Virgin Australia says it will operate the remainder of the day's flights from Bali. All Virgin Australia flights from Australia to Bali remain cancelled until Thursday morning when the airline will update customers on its afternoon plans. Jetstar has indicated it plans to operate all services to and from Bali if the ash cloud remains clear. In addition, the airline will bring back 2200 customers on 11 recovery flights. The flights come after four Jetstar planes were forced to turn back mid-air on Tuesday because of the volcanic ash cloud.

Indonesia shuts Bali airport for second day running

Bali's international airport will remain closed until Friday due to ash erupting from a nearby volcano, Indonesian officials said, grounding hundreds of flights for a second consecutive day.

The Ngurah Rai International Airport on the resort island has been closed since late Tuesday because of a large ash cloud drifting from Mount Rinjani, an active volcano on the nearby island of Lombok.

Authorities on Thursday confirmed Bali's major terminal would remain closed until at least Friday morning, leaving thousands of passengers in the lurch for another day, as they wait for conditions above the airport to improve.

Passengers wait for information on delayed and cancelled flights at the international departure area of Bali's Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar, on November 4, 2015 ©Sonny Tumbelaka (AFP)

"The closure of Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport... will be extended until approximately 07:45am (0045GMT) on Friday because of volcanic ash from Mt Rinjani," transport ministry spokesman J.A. Barata told AFP by text message.

Two airports on Lombok -- including the international terminal -- and a smaller airport on East Java that were all affected by the ash would also remain shut, he added.

Nearly 700 flights, including 320 international ones, were cancelled between Tuesday and Thursday due to the closure, airport manager Trikora Harjo said. He did not have an updated figure on how many more would be cancelled as a result of this latest decision.

Virgin Australia confirmed it had cancelled all flights for Thursday and Friday to and from Bali as a result of the "unsafe" flying conditions, while Jetstar scrapped its Denpasar-bound flights for Thursday and some for Friday.

Indonesian carrier Garuda also cancelled all flights for Thursday in the affected area, while AirAsia said as many as 67 flights to and from Bali would not be proceeding.

The mass cancellations spell travel chaos for thousands of stranded passengers in Bali, including India's Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari, who wrapped up a state visit Wednesday and was due to depart the holiday island until his flight was grounded.

The deportation of an Indian fugitive wanted in his home country for up to 20 murders has also been delayed, after the crime boss was arrested in Bali more than a week ago.

Air traffic is regularly disrupted by volcanic eruptions in Indonesia, which sits on a belt of seismic activity running around the basin of the Pacific Ocean and is home to the highest number of active volcanoes in the world, with around 130.

Mount Baru Jari spews volcanic ash on Lombok island, Indonesia's Nusa Tenggara Barat province, on November 1, 2015 ©Pikong (AFP/File)