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 S. Arabia close to settling compensation for crane victims: Minister

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BerichtOnderwerp: S. Arabia close to settling compensation for crane victims: Minister   do 17 maa 2016 - 10:46

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta, March 17 2016

The government is expecting the imminent payment of compensation for Indonesian citizens killed in the collapse of a huge construction crane at Mecca’s Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia on Sept. 11, 2015, as the Saudi government has entered the final phase of the compensation settlement process, a minister has said.

Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin said on Wednesday that the Saudi government had conveyed its progress on the compensation for Indonesian victims during his recent working visit to the country to discuss haj issues. It was a follow-up to the Saudi government’s announcement on compensation for crane victims conveyed just a few days after the incident occurred.

It stated that the Saudi Arabian Kingdom would provide 1 million riyal (US$267,000) in compensation for every dead or permanently disabled victim and 500,000 riyal ($134,000) for less severely injured victims.

Lukman said the disbursement of compensation was in the hands of the Saudi Finance Ministry and Home Affairs Ministry and so far no confirmation regarding disbursement had been conveyed.

"It takes time. We just hope the disbursement will be carried out sometime soon," Lukman told journalists on Wednesday.

The minister added that the kingdom would also give the opportunity to undertake the haj in 2016 to two people from each victims' family, as the country’s honorary guests. The Saudi government will also grant special visitor visas to family members of victims who are still undergoing medical treatment in Saudi Arabia.

Lukman said the Saudi government had yet to disclose to Indonesian authorities the exact amount of compensation and haj offers it would provide.

“Let's wait for official statements from the Saudi government on these matters,” said Lukman.

The crane incident at the Masjidil Haram complex affected around 107 people, of which 11 Indonesian haj pilgrims died and 42 others were injured

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