Woman rescued from Indonesia landslide after 13 hours

Workers clear materials from a landslide, caused by heavy rain, covering a main road in Bogor, West Java, south of Jakarta, Indonesia February 5, 2018 in this photo taken by Antara Foto. (Reuters)
Updated 06 February 2018
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Woman rescued from Indonesia landslide after 13 hours

JAKARTA: Rescuers in Indonesia pulled a woman alive from a car trapped by a landslide for 13 hours but several other people were still missing Tuesday as torrential rains caused havoc in parts of the capital and neighboring West Java.
Television stations broadcast the frantic rescue effort near Jakarta’s international airport throughout the night. Rescuers in orange uniforms finally pulled the trapped woman from her car at about 7 a.m. on Tuesday.
Another woman rescued several hours earlier from the same car died in hospital, an executive of the company she worked for told local TV.
Muhammad Syauqi, the head of National Search and Rescue Agency, said the landslide caused the wall of an underpass to collapse, trapping the car and injuring the women.
Both women worked for GMF Aeroasia, a subsidiary of national airline Garuda Indonesia.
Seasonal downpours cause dozens of landslides and flash floods each year in Indonesia, an archipelago of more than 17,000 islands where millions of people live in mountainous areas or on flood plains.
On Monday, rescuers retrieved a body from villages ravaged by landslides in the hilly West Java resort town of Puncak and are still searching for at least eight others.
Police had earlier said there were two confirmed deaths from the landslides in that area.
The landslides blocked the main road connecting the area to Jakarta.
The capital, with more than 30 million people in its greater metropolitan area, has raised its flood alert to the highest level.


Flight attendant detained by immigration on return to US

Updated 8 min 33 sec ago
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Flight attendant detained by immigration on return to US

  • Selene Saavedra Roma immigrated illegally to the US from Peru as a child and was later married to an American citizen
  • Enrolled in the government’s program for “Dreamers”, she flew to Mexico for work and was detained due to lack of valid document

WASHINGTON: A Texas flight attendant who was enrolled in the government’s program for “Dreamers” flew to Mexico for work and was stopped by immigration authorities who forced her to spend more than a month in detention, her attorney said.
Selene Saavedra Roman, 28, who immigrated illegally to the US as a child, was released Friday from a detention center in Conroe, Texas, according to a statement from Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Originally from Peru and married to an American citizen, she raised concerns with Mesa Airlines about her immigration status after being assigned to an international flight, attorney Belinda Arroyo said.
The airline assured her she would be fine, but she was stopped by US authorities on Feb. 12, when she returned to Houston, and was sent to detention, where she remained for more than five weeks, Arroyo said.
Soon after her lawyer, her husband, the airline and a flight attendants’ group publicly demanded her release, Saavedra Roman called to tell her husband she was getting out.
“She was crying and she said, ‘Please come get me,’” her husband, David Watkins, told reporters.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement said the agency was looking into her status. Earlier, the agency said Saavedra Roman did not have a valid document to enter the country and was being detained while going through immigration court proceedings.
US Citizenship and Immigration Services — the agency that oversees the program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA — declined to discuss the case. But the agency says on its website that participants who travel outside the country without a special document allowing them to do so are no longer covered by the program.
The agency no longer issues the document to the program’s enrollees, according to the website.
People enrolled in the program are commonly referred to as “Dreamers,” based on never-passed proposals in Congress called the DREAM Act.
The Trump administration sought to end the Obama-era program but was blocked by litigation. New applications have been halted, but renewals continue for hundreds of thousands of immigrants already enrolled.
In a joint statement with the Association of Flight Attendants, Mesa Airlines chief executive Jonathan Ornstein apologized to Saavedra Roman and asked US authorities to release her, arguing that it was unfair to continually detain someone “over something that is nothing more than an administrative error and a misunderstanding.”
“She should have never been advised that she could travel,” Arroyo said. “It was a big mistake.”
Saavedra Roman — who is scheduled to appear before an immigration judge in April — attended Texas A&M University, where she met her husband.
Watkins said he was not initially worried about her assignment because they already obtained approval from Citizenship and Immigration Services to apply for her green card as the wife of an American citizen. She has no criminal record and has long paid her taxes, he said, and she checked with her employer before the trip.
Then she was detained. He could visit her only once a week and could only see her through thick glass. She sounded hopeless, he said.
“I told her, ‘Even if you get deported to Peru, I’ll just go with you,’” he said to reporters. “Regardless of whatever happens in the future, I am not giving up. I am going to keep fighting.”
In a statement, the union representing Saavedra Roman and her colleagues said the event “highlights the urgency of commonsense immigration reform and resolution for America’s children who are part of DACA.”