Pekanbaru, capital of haze-shrouded Riau, fights fires started intentionally in heart of city

One of the fires being battled in the heart of the Riau capital was in an area measuring some 15ha in Bukit Raya - roughly the size of 10 football fields.
One of the fires being battled in the heart of the Riau capital was in an area measuring some 15ha in Bukit Raya - roughly the size of 10 football fields.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA
Pekanbaru shrouded in haze on Sept 20, 2019.
Pekanbaru shrouded in haze on Sept 20, 2019.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.
Pekanbaru is seeing haze mostly originating from Riau's neighbouring provinces including Jambi and South Sumatra where prevailing winds blew the haze north, officials say.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA
The scene after fires were put out at Jalan Moh Taher in Pekanbaru.
The scene after fires were put out at Jalan Moh Taher in Pekanbaru.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA

PEKANBARU (Riau) - Firefighters were battling raging fires at two locations in the capital of Riau province, Pekanbaru, on Friday (Sept 20), just three days after President Joko Widodo visited the province to see for himself fires that the authorities believe were lighted up intentionally to clear land for plantation and other commercial purposes.

Riau, the Indonesian province second closest to Singapore after the Riau Islands province, has shut schools for a week due to acrid haze that has made air quality hover between very unhealthy and hazardous levels.

Please or to continue reading the full article. Learn more about ST PREMIUM.

Enjoy unlimited access to ST's best work

  • Exclusive stories and features on multiple devices
  • In-depth analyses and opinion pieces
  • ePaper and award-winning multimedia content