Monday, July 28, 2008

Indonesian President not to visit Europe while flight ban continues

JAKARTA, July 26 (Xinhua) -- Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has decided not to visit Europe until the European Union (EU) lifts a flight ban sanctioning against 51 Indonesian airlines, including Garuda airline, a minister was quoted by the Jakarta Post as saying here Saturday.

"The President will only visit European Union states on board Garuda Indonesia," Transportation Minister Jusman Syafii Djamal said Friday at the State Palace following EU's decision to prolong its ban against all Indonesian airlines.

President Susilo planned to visit Europe before the fuel prices hike in May. But the plan is still pending and has yet to be rescheduled.

Djusman said the President had ordered continuing efforts to improve flight safety and security.

Djusman also said that the reason for EU to continue ban for Garuda was non-technical despite EU's denial.

The minister also expressed disappointment by the EU's unfriendly approach of not trusting Indonesian civil aviation authority.

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