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President Promises Clean Up of Airports

President Calls for Elimination of Thugs and Touts at All of Indonesia's Airports.

(3/12/2005) President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono used the occasion of the formal inauguration of improvement at the Silangit Airport in Tapanuli, Sumatra to call for a crackdown on thugs and touts at all of Indonesia's airports.

Citing the widespread presence of thugs and touts preying on the traveling public as also posing a threat to security, the President said that the many cases of coercion resulting from the presence of such individuals at the airports has caused Indonesia to be the object of much criticism and threatens the stability of the Nation's tourism industry.

Many of the countries international airports serve as basis for of operations for illegal transport and travel services as well as sophisticated operations that prey on returning Indonesian migrant workers.