September 9, 2019

RI: Malaysia's transboundary haze complaints unacceptable

JAKARTA ( - Indonesian Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya has responded to Malaysia’s plan of sending a diplomatic note about transboundary haze, as widely reported by Reuters and other media outlets, by stating that Malaysia’s move is based on unreliable evidence.

“This is the second time that Malaysian authorities have been shouting about transboundary haze coming into their territory from Indonesia, but this information simply isn’t true,” she told (Sep 7) in Jakarta.  

The previous accusation, which was made by Malaysia in early August, proved to be inaccurate after a ground check was conducted backed up by other relevant evidence, the minister explained.

“This time it's just the same. This complaint is without any substance and therefore is unacceptable,” she said.

The satellite images below, which were analyzed by Indonesia's Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG), were also referenced by Minister Nurbaya as they clearly show that no transboundary haze was detected in Malaysia from September 5-7, 2019. 

The BMKG analysis also determined the direction of the winds that occurred during this period, and on that basis too it could be firmly concluded that no transboundary haze was detected in Malaysia, as alleged by Malaysian authorities. 

Don’t just scream

Minister Nurbaya pointed out that she had checked the relevant data with the head of the BMKG Dwikorita Karnawati, as well as with the head of the Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BNPB) Doni Monardo, with both of them confirming that it was untrue that there was any transboundary haze in Malaysia during the period in question.

The minister went on to decry the moaning of Indonesia’s neighbour. “'I’ve also been continually coordinating with the border (authorities). I hope Malaysia can carry out careful observations too. Don't just scream (at Indonesia).” 

She also asked for Malaysia to be aware that the state of Sarawak was also afflicted by quite a lot of hotspots (Sep 5) during the period when the transboundary haze allegedly went into the country from Indonesia.

“These hotspots (in Malaysia’s territory) also need to be handled. Don’t just start screaming at Indonesia straight away,” Minister Nurbaya stated firmly.