‘Bruneians still flying to Jakarta’

National 2 minutes, 29 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE Indonesian Embassy in Bandar Seri Begawan said its government remains highly committed to combating terrorism in the wake of the recent explosions in Jakarta which killed seven people.

In a press statement issued through the foreign mission yesterday, Indonesia reassured the public that it would “take every effort” to ensure the safety and security of all its citizens and foreign nationals in the republic.

The government also encouraged people to “remain calm and continue with (their) daily activities” amid tightened security in the aftermath of the attacks.

Bomb blasts rocked the Indonesian capital on Thursday around 10.50am before a shootout ensued between the terrorists and police. The police were able to take control of the situation within half an hour and brought the situation in the area to normal by 3pm.

All five gunmen were killed in the incident, which also claimed the lives of two civilians including a Canadian national.

The attacks injured 19 civilians including four foreigners of Algerian, Austrian, Dutch and German nationalities. Five police officers were also injured in their efforts to seal off the area and move in on the terrorists.

According to the Indonesian Embassy, all businesses and premises within the vicinity of the incident were expected to be fully operational and return to normal by January 15.

Meanwhile, several travel agencies in Brunei reported most of their Jakarta-bound customers were undeterred by the recent explosions as there were no requests to cancel or postpone their flights as of press time.

“A couple of people called us because they were concerned about the situation there, but it didn’t stop them from going to Jakarta,” said CP Foo of Century Travel Centre Sdn Bhd.

He added their clients visiting Jakarta were safe and those returning to Brunei from the popular tourist destination were able to do so without incident.

Foo said the terror attacks had “no huge impact” on sales as it was currently low travel season.

“It’s unfortunate as these incidents are sometimes unpredictable. We would like to remind people to exercise caution wherever they travel to,” he added.

Another travel agency based in the sultanate, declining to be named, also said none of its clients have cancelled or postponed their flights to Jakarta. However, they advised travellers bound for Indonesia to stay safe.

The Brunei Embassy in Jakarta confirmed that all Bruneians living in the Indonesian capital were safe, following the explosions on Thursday.

“The embassy will continue (to monitor) the situation, and in the meantime, Bruneians who are living in Jakarta can contact the embassy should they need assistance,” said an official.

Strongly condemning the terror attacks, both the governments of Brunei and Indonesia expressed their condolences to the bereaved families of victims.

The Indonesian Embassy in Brunei also extended its deepest gratitude and highest appreciation to the government and people of the sultanate for their support and condolences to the families of victims, as well as to the Indonesian government and people.

The Brunei Times