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The Jakarta Post
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DKI Jakarta, Indonesia
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Condolences on Sumatra earthquake

| Sat, October 3 2009 | 02:06 pm

We're deeply moved by the suffering and loss of life that's been caused by the recent earthquake in West Sumatra. And my administration has been in touch with the government of Indonesia to make it clear that the United States stands ready to help in this time of need, and I've ordered my administration to coordinate with the ongoing relief and recovery efforts there.

Indonesia is an extraordinary country that's known extraordinary hardship from natural disasters. I know firsthand that the Indonesian people are strong and resilient and have the spirit to overcome this enormous challenge. And as they do, they need to know that America will be their friend and partner.

Barack Obama
US President

Dear President Yudhoyono,

I wanted to offer you and the people of Indonesia my sincere condolences following the recent earthquake in West Sumatra province. I send my sympathy to the families and friends who have lost loved ones and are coping with the devastating destruction to buildings and infrastructure.

The United Kingdom stands ready to offer assistance at this difficult time.

Gordon Brown
UK Prime Minister

I am deeply shocked as I continue to follow the reports of the devastating earthquake in Sumatra that has claimed so many lives and caused such widespread damage.

I would like to express my heartfelt sympathy to you, also on behalf of my fellow Germans.

At this difficult time, our thoughts are with the family members and friends of the victims as well as with those who lost everything they owned in the disaster. Along with you, we hope the people who are still missing will be rescued unharmed. I wish the injured a speedy recovery.

We know that Indonesia will do everything in its power to relieve the suffering of the people in Sumatra. I assure you that Germany is prepared to stand side by side with you as you work to overcome this challenge and will provide support in every way we can. That is why today the German government has already begun making arrangements to provide emergency aid.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier
German Foreign Minister

I have taken knowledge, with deep regret, of the recent earthquake that struck the Republic of Indonesia, especially the island of Sumatra. Greatly saddened with the ensuing devastation, I wish to express the solidarity of the government and the people of Brazil for the loss of human lives and property damage.

The Brazilian government is willing to contribute for the assistance to the victims by means of immediate allocation of resources.

Luis Inacio Lula da Silva
President of the Federative Republic of Brazil

On behalf of the people and government of Pakistan, I wish to extend our deepest sympathies at the tragic loss of precious lives and damage to property as a result of severe earthquake which struck Indonesia on September 30, 2009.

We would like to convey our heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the bereaved families and those who have been affected by the natural calamity.

We hope that those who have suffered would find the courage, will and determination to overcome present difficulties. Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.

Asif Ali Zardari
Pakistan President

I am shocked to learn that strong earthquakes have occurred in West Sumatra, causing heavy casualties and loss of property.

I expend deep condolences to the victims of the disaster and my sincere sympathy to their families.

Hu Jintao
Chinese President

The EU Heads of Mission, on behalf of the European Union, offered today their sincere condolences regarding the terrible tragedy and loss of life caused by the devastating earthquakes on the Indonesian island of Sumatra.

In this difficult moment for many inhabitants of Sumatra, the EU Heads of Mission assured their solidarity and expressed their personal feelings of closeness with the people of Indonesia and in particular with the victims of this tragedy.

The EU Heads of Mission

I was indeed very sad to learn of the massive earthquake that struck West Sumatra, resulting in heavy loss of life and extensive damage to property.

On behalf of the staff of the Embassy of Sri Lanka and my own behalf, I wish to extend my deep sympathy and solidarity to the government and the bereaved families who were affected by the terrible disaster. We are deeply grieved by the continuing rise in the death toll and the number of those injured.

Nana Mallawaarachchi V.S.V.
Sri Lankan Ambassador to Indonesia

Australia extends its condolences to the communities affected by the disaster. Australia is working with Indonesian counterparts to work quickly and precisely to respond rapidly to the earthquake.

Australian officials in Jakarta from the Australian Agency for International Development, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Defense and the Australian Federal Police are working with the government of Indonesia to identify how Australia can best help the people of Sumatra.

Paul Robilliard
Australian Embassy Charge d'Affaires to Indonesia

Babies as commodities?

I see the concerns and points that raised by the writer of "Baby Beggars: Failure of the State" (The Jakarta Post, p. 24. If babies who have just started their life are on the street, what can people of the country expect for their future?

Ensuring that all children are in school is a must. This means making sure the children have access to affordable and quality education. And it is the obligation of the state to ensure this. As Indonesia is a paternalistic country, the role of leadership is critical.

Whether the private sector and public are called for participating in making this happens, the role of the leader is really important. The state is that outside the civil society - the government, judiciary and parliamentary.

I cannot simply think about babies as economic commodities that be treated in a demand and supply mechanism. Sorry.

Riana Panjaitan
Jakarta

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