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Readers Writes - Security in Asia - Are we all doing enough

Travel News Asia 25 October 2002

Below are just a few of the readers comments received following our articles on 21 October 2002, Security in Asia - Are we all doing enough.

Many of our readers requested that their full names not be used, only first names instead.


- Ronaldo in Cebu - We have increased security in the tourists spots especially in hotels, cars are now fully checked, and removed if left over night without authorisation, visitors are not allowed in without a verifiable meeting with a guest and other measures to try and deter these sick people.

- Sarah in Bangkok - no matter what they do we can never stop someone if they want to blow something up.

- Brian in Jakarta - From the daily upgraded warnings given by the various 'western' embassies, you would think that Jakarta hotels and shopping malls would be stepping up their security arrangements. Some have, others have not. Where action has been taken at least there is an armed soldier [they may be others in reserve] and 'security checks' are carried out on vehicles. Unlike Manila there are rarely any electronic detectors at entrances to premises unless a president or prime minister is visiting the establishment. But surely this is all a waste of time?

Why bother to use a hand-held Garrard metal detector around the bottom of the car when I know that the car is made of metal? It makes a loud noise and the guy tells me to be on my way. Why not open the medium sized sports bag on display on the seat to check its contents? - it is never looked at and no question is asked. Mirrors under the car are not helpful if the explosive is inside the engine compartment or the car roof. No questions asked. Why? Maybe because I am white and driving myself - unusual in this city of 'professional' drivers. But let us be clear, there will be white people willing to drive a vehicle to a car park for a fat fee - no questions asked. If the security job is to be done at all then please do it properly. This will take time and it will be inconvenient and people will moan, but I will be happy to suffer this delay to give me a better chance of living.

- Bill in Phuket - Having lived in Thailand for many years I doubt that the terrorists will attack Thailand I however have been affected by the warnings and  would like to see more security put in place. If it takes me five extra minutes to check security, and that five minutes keeps me alive I am all for it.

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