Bali Hai to the Rescue
Three Divers at Nusa Lembongan Saved from Uncertain Fate by Crew of Bali Hai Aristocat
(9/9/2013) Three tourists on an afternoon’s diving outing at Nusa Lembongan narrowly averted tragedy when they were swept out to sea late Friday afternoon, September 6, 2013.
The divers - Theresia Gollner (Austria), Tracy Ivinson (British) and Chris Ivinson (British) were enjoying an afternoon dive provided by Two Fish Divers when unusually strong current carried them out beyond the designate pick-up point at Blue Corner. Currents, estimated at more than 3 knots, swept the three out into the Lembongan Straits.
Surfacing after a 35-minute dive the three were unable to see the dive boat organized to take them back to shore as the current began to gradually pull them further out to sea.
Fortunately, a crewmember of Bali Hai’s Aristocat Sailing Catamaran spotted the divers in increasing distress and helped direct a rescue from the choppy seas.
Food, water and dry towels were provided to the divers as the ship made its way back to its home base in Benoa. The group spent a night in Bali recovering from their ordeal before returning to Lembongan Island the next day.
All-Expended Extended Stay in Bali
Russian Man May Get Six Years in Prison for Possessing 83 grams of Marijuana
(9/14/2013) A Russian tourist Anton Pudikov (32) has heard Bali prosecutors ask that the be imprisoned for six years and fined Rp. 800 million (US$73,000) for possessing 83 grams of marijuana at his residence in Jimbaran.
State Prosecutor Ida Ayu Ketut Sulasmi told the court that Pudikov has been proven to have violated the Indonesian narcotic law.
According to the Bali Post, Police found the drugs in two separate containers when they raided his house on January 19, 2013.
The case will continue with Pudikov’s lawyer presenting his defense prior to a final ruling on guilt or innocencce by the panel of judges.
Bali Gets a New Top Cop
General Albertus Julius Benny Mokalu Now in Charge of Bali Police
(9/14/2013) Brigadier General Albertus Julius Benny Mokalu has been promoted to the job of Provincial Chief of Police for the island of Bali replacing Inspector General Arif Wachyunadi.
The 54-year-old General Mokalu comes to Bali after completing a term as the Chief of the Police in Bengkulu, Sumatra.
Meanwhile, General Wachyunadi has been assigned to his new post as an Operational Assistant at National Police Headquarters in Jakarta.
The change in assignments for the two senior police officials was announced in a classified wire issued by the Chief of the Indonesian Police on September 9, 2013.
The date for a the ceremony formally transferring authority from General Wachyunadi to General Mokalu is expected to happen in the coming few days, although the specific date has yet to be announced.
Mokalu who has the rank of a one-star general is expected to receive another star as the Bali police force is traditionally headed by a two-star general.
Mokalu has held the job of Bengkulu Chief of Police for only one year, winning that appointment in September 2012.
Wachyunadi has held the top job in the Bali police for only 9 months, since his assignment to that job in December 2012.
Bringing the World Together
Asian Tourism Visitors Meet to Trade Ideas on How to Facilitate the Movement of International Tourists
(9/14/2013) Tourism ministers from across ASIA gathered in Seoul, South Korea, September 10-11, 2013, in an Asian Summit organized by World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), to discuss how to facilitate the movement of tourists through greater air access and the easing of visa restrictions.
As reported by the State News Agency Antara, Indonesian Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy Mari Elko Pangestu said she also participated in a side-summit held in Seoul with the theme “Staying Ahead of Tomorrow” also sponsored by the WTTC.
“I was invited by the WTTC to participate in a closed door meeting with minister of tourism from across Asia and other leaders in the tourism sector,” said Pangestu.
Pangestu said three main topics were discussed in those meeting: first, the facilitation of foreign tourists through greater air access and the easing of visa restrictions; second, the joint promotion of tourism destinations and tourism products; and, third, policy making that will ensure tourism remains sustainable on an environmental, social and economic level with discernable benefits to the local community.
Failing to Linger
Bali by the Numbers: Visits to Bali in July 2013 stayed 3.19 days
(9/14/2013) Bisnis Bali reports that foreign and domestic tourists visiting Bali during the month of July 2013 and using starred hotels stayed an average of only 3.19 days.
The chief of the Central Statistics Body of Bali (BPS-Bali), Gde Suarsa, said, “The condition increased 0.20% compared with the previous month when the average length of stay was only 2.99 days.”
On a cumulative basis the length of stay for tourist until July 2013 was 3.23 days – a period substantially longer than the 2.99 days recorded for the month of July.
Also on a cumulative basis through the end of July, foreign tourists staying in starred hotels spent 3.81 days, while domestic tourists only spent 3.06 days.
Meanwhile, if the data for two-starred hotels is isolated from the data, foreign tourists stayed an average 2.75 days and domestic travelers 3.24 days.
Gde Suarsa elaborated further saying foreign tourists at three-starred hotels stayed 3.03 days and domestic visitors 4.73 days. Four-starred hotels recorded length-of-stay of 3.25 days for foreigners and 2.35 days for domestic guests.
Finally, on five-star hotels foreigners stayed 3.27 days and domestic travelers 3.14 days.
Cool Hand Luke
Foodie Alert: Luke Mangan Opens Salt tapas Bali
(9/14/2013) World-famous Australian chef Luke Mangan has landed in Bali to open Salt tapas – the latest member of the Luke Mangan family of “Salt” branded restaurants in Australia and Asia - further cementing Bali’s growing reputation as a leading world of culinary excellence.
Salt tapas is located at the Sentosa Seminyak in the Petitienget area of Bali in the heart of Bali’s Mecca of restaurants and Bars, set in a five-star resort offering 43 luxury villas.
Mangan commenced his cooking career in Melbourne working with Herman Schneider, of “Two Faces.“
Seeking to perfect his art, Luka Mangan traveled to London to work with Michel Roux at the 3-star Michelin Waterside Inn.
One of Australia’s leading chefs and restaurateurs, Luke Mangan is highly regarded as an Ambassador of Australian culinary culture. Offering the highest standards of food, wine and service, Salt tapas brings a unique Australian twist to the modern tapas bar.
Salt tapas will feature a wide selection of tapas in the company of what Mangan calls “simple food done well.” Using local produce, and adding the prominent Mangan touch, Salt tapas aims to present a range of new and fresh menus every six months.
Luke currently owns and operates Glass Brasserie, Hilton Sydney; Salt grill, Hilton Surfers Paradise; Salt grill, Jakarta; Salt grill and Salt tapas & bar, Singapore; Salt and the adjoining World Wine Bar, Tokyo; Salt grill onboard three P&O cruise liners and has only recently opened his new wine bar in Sydney, mojo by Luke Mangan.
He is also the consulting chef for Virgin Australia.
Luke has also written four best-selling cookbooks and an autobiography ‘The Making of a Chef’.
To complement the down-to-earth brand of Salt, classic cocktails and beverages echoing the excessive ‘50’s, ‘60’s and ‘70’s, will create, what the Australian calls, “pairings by design, for natural, sustainable flavors.”
Prior to a formal grand opening. Salt tapas has soft opened from early September 2013.
FPI Protestors from Lombok Traveling to Bali
UPDATE: 5,000 FPI Members from Lombok Planning to Cross to Bali
Bali News: FPI Protestors from Lombok Traveling to Bali
(9/14/2013) Tempo.com (14:32 – Saturday, September 14, 2013)
A spokesman for the FPI (Islamic Defenders' Front), Muchsin Alatas, says that as many as 5,000 Moslems from Lombok, East Nusa Tenggara are in the process of crossing to Bali to disrupt the Miss World 2013 contest in Bali.
According to Alatas, the FPI members are “prepared to die” to do support the fatwa of the Majelis Ulama Indonesia (MUI). Muschin said his members were prepared to wage war against pornography and pornographic activity on Indonesian territory.
Borrowing from the Balinese nomenclature for a suicidal fight to the death, Muschin said the FPI members “were ready to fight a Puputan.”
Muschin’s statements were made on Saturday, September 14, 2013.
Elaborating on his meaning, Muschin said Moslems totally rejected the holding of Miss World 2013 in Bali and Indonesia. He added, that if there is strong resistance from the organizers his members were prepared to (also) take strong action.
Moslems representing the hard line views of the MUI and FPI held demonstrations in several locations around Indonesia on Saturday. The central Hotel Indonesia Square in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta saw around 100 protestors all dressed in white take to the street.
Prior to the demonstration, loudspeakers across the city issued the call: “The Order of the MUI, FUI, FPI to all Moslems. Let's follow a peaceful demonstration of one million Moslems to enforce the MUI fatwa to refuse Miss World 2013 on Saturday, September 14, 2013 at 13:00 WIB until finished at the HI (Hotel Indonesia) circle in Jakarta.”
With Tempo.Co reporting only one hundred demonstrators finally showing up to demonstrate, the expected number fell far short of the hoped for one million.
The orders issued to Moslems across Jakarta also told followers to invite family, friends and other followers – as many as possible. All were told to wear white clothing, bring items needed for prayer and food supplies.
Muschin told the press he felt certain that Moslems would turn out in huge numbers to refuse the Miss World Contest in Indonesia
Workin' for the Yankee Dollar
Faced with a Weakening Rupiah, Garuda Sets its Sights on Dollar Spending Foreign Travelers
(9/14/2013) Because of the declining value of the Indonesian Rupiah against the U.S. Dollar, Garuda Indonesia is stepping up efforts to attract foreign tourists buffer the airline’s income stream.
Bisnis.com reports Erick Meijer, the Director of Sales and Marketing for Garuda, admits that the declining value of the Rupiah and higher fuel costs are weighing heavily on the airline’s operational costs.
“The effect is on the ticket price. It’s not possible to raise all prices that would just reduce the number of people flying. The solution is to seek more passengers from abroad. Our hope is that the dollar can be stabilized again,” said Meijer when interviewed at the Garuda Indonesian Travel Fair in Jakarta on September 13, 2013.
The Airline’s reasoning is that the higher value of the U.S. dollar against the Indonesian Rupiah will represent a savings to foreign visitors. Also, in order to attract more foreign visitors, Garuda Indonesia is also actively participating in overseas travel fairs to promote various Indonesian destinations.
“In early November we will join World Travel Market in London. In early January we will participate in a travel fair in Holland to promote Indonesia and seek more foreign tourists,” Meijer said.
At the same time the Indonesian national carrier is adding new routes and additional frequencies on established routes considered strategically important. This year Garuda will add 17 new domestic routes and 5 international routes including Medan-Penang, Surabaya-Singapore, Jakarta-Perth, Jakarta-Osaka, and Denpasar- Brisbane.
Next year Garuda is considering flying Jakarta-Manila as well as new services to Vietnam. “Countries in ASEAN have great potential. This is also the case with European destinations,” Meijer explained.
There also plans for direct flights and capacity to China and the Middle East.
Prognosticating a Better Future
Bali Opens a Breast Cancer Support Center
(9/14/2013) The Bali Pink Ribbon Foundation (Yayasan Pita Merah Muda Bali) will officially open the Pink Ribbon House on Friday, October 18, 2013 from 6 :00 – 8:00 pm at Jalan Dewi Sri IV No. 1 in Kuta.
The Pink Ribbon House is the first dedicated breast cancer support center in Bali. For the past five years, working with local and International doctors, Bali Pink Ribbon (BPR) has run breast cancer awareness seminars in offices, villages, universities and hotels across Bali.
Survival rates for breast cancer, when detected early, are very high, and treatment is much less traumatic and expensive. BPR aims to bring the important message of proactive self-examination, screening and early detection to all women in Bali in an effort to save lives.
BPR also funds free breast screening for poor women.
Pink Ribbon House is a Breast Cancer Support Center offering a friendly face, the chance to talk to survivors, and information in Indonesian and English. Monthly awareness seminars are also held in the center.
Pink Ribbon House is manned by a dedicated team of local and expat women who support women in Bali by providing choice and a chance to live a healthy life, even with a cancer diagnosis.
Shopping a Solution
Bali Airport Traders Threaten Mass Demonstrations if their Future Fate is Not Resolved Before the End of September 2013
Bali News: Shopping a Solution
(9/14/2013) Hundreds of members from the Airport Traders Association (P2B) continued their protests on Friday, September 13, 2013, in front of the office of Bali’s governor, repeating their demand for a clarification of where they will be allowed to trade in the revamped Ngurah Rai International Airport.
Kompas.com reports that the group of 121 traders who comprise the membership of P2B are growing increasingly frustrated with the Bali airport’s management's refusal or inability to finalize earlier promises to accommodate the aspirations of the airport traders. “We have already been told to move, but until this moment we don't know tp where,” complained Wayan Sukses, the chairman of P2B.
Shortly after the group delivered speeches in from the Governor’s office, the deputy governor of Bali, Ketut Sudikerta, approached the demonstrators who screamed abuse at him, demanding news on the future of their businesses.
Permitted to speak by the protestors, Sudikerta implored for more time, reminding P2B that he had only been assigned the task of sorting our their problem five days before.
“I promise to pay attention to all points. There is no desire to leave anyone destitute. None at all,” said the deputy-governor.
Sudikerta said he pans to meet urgently with the Airport’s management to discuss the relocation of the traders.
While the members of P2B are hoping the provincial government will satisfactorily address their demands, the traders are threatening to launch large scale demonstrations in no firm resolution is achieved by the end of September.
FPI Fails to March on Bali from East Java
Police Disperse More than 100 FPI Members at East Java Ferry Crossing to Bali to Disrupt Miss World Contes
Bali News: FPI Fails to March on Bali from East Java
(9/14/2013) Tempo.com and The Jakarta Globe reported that around 100 members of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) from East Java unsuccesfully attempted to cross over on the ferry crossing from Ketapang, East Java to Gilimanuk, Bali on Saturday, September 14, 203
The group was reportedly intent on disrupting the Miss World Competition being held at Nusa Dua, Bali.
The 100 or so FPI members held prayers on Saturday afternoon in front of Stasiun Banyuwangi Baru and then marched to the ferry crossing at the port of Ketapang. The port's location is around 100 meters from the station.
Before entering the area of the port, the FPI members were confronted by an estimated one thousand members of the Police Mobile Brigade led by a phalanx of policewomen blocking FPI's progress towards the waiting ferries. The FPI demonstrators attempted to negotiate their passage with the police.
East Java police told the group to disperse because they did not hold the required protest permit.
In speeches delivered by the local coordinator of the FPI, Sasmito, proclaimed a desire for "sacred struggle" or "jihad" aimed at disrupting the Miss World Contest being held in Bali.
In his speech before the FPI crowd, Sasmito asked: "Are you ready to die? Are you ready to seep Bali clean from evil?"
Eventually the protestors decided to cancel their plans to enter Bali, boarded waited buses and cars and returned to their homes,
Teaching the Next Generation to Build Peace
Bali to Host World Education Congress September 23-24, 2013
(9/14/2013) Bali’s Udayana University will play host to the 10th World Education Congress September 23-24, 2013.
The State News Agency Antara, reports that the meeting will convene private universities from around the world.
The rector of Udayana University, Professor Dr. I Ketut Suastika, welcomed the coming conference that will discuss the educational issues facing private institutions of higher education organized under the general theme of “teaching to build peace.”
Bali will be the first Asian destination to host the prestigious congress that was originally scheduled to be held in Argentina, but eventually switched to Bali.
Suastika explained that the meeting was moved to Bali because of the Island’s reputation as a destination for major international conferences and the fact that Bali is also home to a number of private universities.
A total of 130 delegates from 17 countries are expected to attend.
The conference is operated by the World Confederation of Private Education (COMEP) and was first convened in Sao Paulo, Brazil in 1990.
COMEP promotes the universal right to education and pluralism through education and free cultural expression.
Two from Dili in a Pickle
Two East Timor Nationals Sentenced to Prison for Kidnapping and Theft in Bali
(9/14/2013) Two Timor Leste nationals, Manuel Hedrique Soares and, his purported lover, Joaninha Maria Graciet Verdial Viera, have been sentenced to two-years and three-months imprisonment for kidnapping a French toddler in Bali in June 2013.
Presiding udge Hadi Masruri handed down the verdict on Thursday, September 12, 2013. The punishment was less stringent than the
Three-years and six-months sought by State prosecutors.
The judges also imposed a fine of Rp. 60 million on each of the defendants, failure of which to pay will add an additional 6 months to each of their sentences.
In rendering the verdict, Judge Masruri said it had been proven that the defendants had criminally kidnapped the child and also committed the theft of private property when they brought 2-year-old Logan Bertrand Nicholas Mattei from his hotel in Kuta and attempted to sell the child to an orphanage in North Bali.
The woman had met the boy’s father, Christophe Mattei, at the Bounty Discotheque in Kuta. Invited back to his hotel for the night, the man awoke to find his personal belongings, a sum of cash and his son all missing.
Police managed to track down the boy with the help of hotel staff and a CCTV camera installed at the property
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