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Friday, October 9th

Indonesia seeks Australian help on fires “Indonesia has asked Australia to help it fight forest fires raging through Kalimantan and Sumatra that have created dangerously high levels of air pollution in the region. Foreign Ministry spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir said Australia was among five ‘friendly’ countries that had confirmed they would provide assistance, although the exact nature was not yet known. He said water bombing planes were among the forms of assistance needed. Last month Indonesia refused Singapore’s offer of aircraft for cloud seeding and fire fighting, saying the government was well equipped to handle the situation. However the haze has caused school closures, interruptions to sporting events, flight cancellations and thousands of respiratory illnesses across the region. The crisis has been exacerbated by drought across Indonesia and the prolonged dry season caused by El Nino.”

The Sydney Morning Herald