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    Scuba dive record in Manado, Indonesia

    Independence Day dive breaks world record in Manado

    The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Tue, 08/18/2009 12:58 PM | Headlines

    Indonesia plunged into the Guinness Book of Records Sunday after a mass dive as part of the Sail Bunaken 2009 event held in North Sulawesi. The event was organized by the Indonesian Navy in conjunction with the country's Independence Day celebrations and involved 2,861 people diving simultaneously.
    Another world record was broken at the same event by the divers, including military personnel and civilians, who held an underwater Independence Day flag ceremony in Manado on Monday.
    The ceremony was the forth world record Indonesia has broken so far, Navy deputy chief Rear Adm. Moekhlas Sidik told Antara news agency.
    The breaking of two world records was a special gift for Indonesia celebrating its 64th Independence Day.
    The new world records are expected to increase visits by both domestic and foreign tourists to Indonesia, particularly to Manado.
    The 2,861 divers broke the world record as they remained underwater for 31 minutes, the longest time so far achieved internationally.
    The previous world record was broken in the Maldives by 979 divers for only 10 minutes.
    The dive in Malalayang waters started at around 10 a.m. Sunday and 31 minutes later the divers, including 51 foreigners, ended the dive gradually.
    Two governors, S. Sarundajang from North Sulawesi and Fadel Muhamad from Gorontalo were among the participants.
    Nine-year-old Kesia Lamudju was the youngest diver to participate in the event.
    "We have broken the world record today, we are very proud of our strong maritime country," Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Freddy Numberi said in Manado.
    The record breaking success was decided by a representative from the Guinness Book of World Records, Sinogagliesi Lucia, who witnessed the event.
    Lucia said the record breaking dive was valid and amazing.
    The event was extraordinary because so many people joined the mass dive and broke a world record, Lucia added.
    North Sulawesi legislative council member, Benny Rhamdani, said the world record success deserved a special commendation from the central government.
    "There should be special recognition of the organizers and the region holding the international event as it has boosted Indonesia's image overseas," he told Antara. The event was tightly monitored by a helicopter that hovered over the dive site, and four Indonesian warships, as tens of thousands witnessed the event.

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    Go to comments August 17, 2009

    Nurfika Osman
    Scuba divers unfurling an Indonesian flag underwater in Bunaken, North Sulawesi, on Monday. (Photo: Prasetyo Utomo, Antara)
    ‘Sail Maluku’ Planned as Boost to Tourism

    As a follow-up to Sail Bunaken, the country will host Sail Maluku next year in a bid to create more international tourist destinations and promote the richness of the country’s maritime and fisheries activities, officials said on Monday.

    Aji Sularso, director general of resource supervision at the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, s aid Maluku was chosen as the site of the country’s next international maritime event because it had a good chance of becoming a tourism gateway for Australians and other residents of the region.

    “We want to expand tourism destinations and create a new gateway to attract more people from Australia and other countries such as Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands,” Aji said.

    “We want to let the world know that Maluku is rich in maritime and fisheries adventures.”

    A day earlier, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Freddy Numberi said Sail Maluku 2010, expected to be held in the Banda Sea, would boost the local economy.

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