Riau haze operation to end by April 4

Riau haze operation to end by April 4
A forest fire burns in Riau province in Indonesia's Sumatra island.

The Riau Haze Disaster Mitigation Task Force has expressed optimism that the forest and land fires in the province will be under control by April 4.

"The deadline of the 21-day emergency response operation under the control of the BNPB [National Disaster Mitigation Agency] as instructed by the President can be met," the task force's spokesperson Col. Bernard Robert said in Pekanbaru on Tuesday.

He said the task force had worked effectively and that the favourable weather had assisted its efforts. Although haze was still spotted in a number of areas, he added, that the task force was not concerned because the haze was basically leftover smog from extinguished hotspots.

"The haze will dissipate once the rain reaches Riau," said Bernard, adding that rain had fallen over the majority of the province in the last few days.

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