BANGKOK, August 6, 2003—The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) today condemned the August 5 car bomb blast in Jakarta which killed at least 14 people and injured more than 150 as an inhumane act of terrorism conducted against defenceless citizens, most of them Indonesians.
PATA President and CEO, Mr. Peter de Jong, said: “We join with Marriott in sending our condolences to the friends and relatives of the deceased and injured. This is a barbaric act that will set back the social and economic well-being of many innocent Indonesians. It`s been a long road back from October 12 in Bali last year. This was the last thing that we needed.”
PATA has offered its full support to Indonesian tourism authorities and the PATA Indonesia Chapter. PATA supports Indonesia Minister for Culture and Tourism, Mr. I Gede Ardika for telling TTG Asia: “Let`s leave the investigation to the police. We must not bow to the terrorist`s aim to create fear and instability. Instead, we must continue with our efforts to rescue Indonesia`s tourism.”
PATA Vice President, Mr. Peter Semone, praised hotel chains such as Marriott for having implemented heightened security measures across their whole networks months before the attack. “The public should note that the Marriott group had implemented advanced security measures and that the bomb was ignited outside the property in a public area beyond the Marriott`s immediate control.”
Mr. Semone, a former 10-year resident of Indonesia, urged commentators not to speculate on who the perpetrators were, or their motives, at this early stage.
For more information about guests or employees at the JW Marriott in Jakarta, please call collect (1-402) 390-3265 outside the United States or toll-free 1-866-211-4610 within the U.S.. All media calls should be referred to (1-301) 380-7770 (a U.S. phone number).