Sumatran tiger kills farmer in Indonesia

A 55-year-old Indonesian man was killed by a tiger at a coffee plantation in South Sumatra province. (Reuters)
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Updated 13 December 2019

Sumatran tiger kills farmer in Indonesia

  • Tigers mauled to death another coffee farmer and seriously injured two Indonesian tourists in separate incidents in the province last month
  • Human-animal conflicts are common in the vast Southeast Asian archipelago, especially in areas where the clearing of rainforest is destroying animal habitats

PALEMBANG, Indonesia: A Sumatran tiger has killed an Indonesian farmer, police said Friday, in the third fatal attack by the critically endangered species in less than a month.
The 55-year-old was set upon by the big cat at a coffee plantation in South Sumatra province on Thursday.
Authorities said the dead man’s companion screamed in vain to warn him about the approaching predator.
“All of sudden, the tiger pounced on the victim,” local police chief Ferry Harahap told AFP on Friday.
The deadly attack comes just a week after a tiger killed another farmer in nearby Pagaralam.
Tigers mauled to death another coffee farmer and seriously injured two Indonesian tourists in separate incidents in the province last month.
Local conservation agency official Martialis Puspito blamed human encroachment on the endangered animal’s habitat for the spate of attacks, adding that residents were being warned to steer clear of the wilderness.
“We cannot drive out the tigers because the jungles are their habitat so it’s people who have to stay out of there,” he said.
Human-animal conflicts are common in the vast Southeast Asian archipelago, especially in areas where the clearing of rainforest to make way for palm oil plantations is destroying animal habitats.
Sumatran tigers are considered critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, with fewer than 400 believed to remain in the wild.


Israeli jeweler makes $1.5m gold coronavirus mask

Updated 11 August 2020

Israeli jeweler makes $1.5m gold coronavirus mask

  • The 18-karat white gold mask will be decorated with 3,600 white and black diamonds
  • The Israeli company says it will be the world’s most expensive coronavirus mask

MOTZA: An Israeli jewelry company is working on what it says will be the world’s most expensive coronavirus mask, a gold, diamond-encrusted face covering with a price tag of $1.5 million.

The 18-karat white gold mask will be decorated with 3,600 white and black diamonds and fitted with top-rated N99 filters at the request of the buyer, said designer Isaac Levy.

Levy, owner of the Yvel company, said the buyer had two other demands: that it be completed by the end of the year, and that it would be the priciest in the world. That last condition, he said, “was the easiest to fulfill.”

He declined to identify the buyer, but said he was a Chinese businessman living in the United States.

The glitzed-up face mask may lend some pizzazz to the protective gear now mandatory in public spaces in many countries. But at 270 grams (over half a pound) — nearly 100 times that of a typical surgical mask — it is not likely to be a practical accessory to wear.

n an interview at his factory near Jerusalem, Levy showed off several pieces of the mask, covered in diamonds. One gold plate had a hole for the filter.

“Money maybe doesn’t buy everything, but if it can buy a very expensive COVID-19 mask and the guy wants to wear it and walk around and get the attention, he should be happy with that,” Levy said.

Such an ostentatious mask might also rub some the wrong way at a time when millions of people around the world are out of work or suffering economically. Levy said that while he would not wear it himself, he was thankful for the opportunity.

“I am happy that this mask gave us enough work for our employees to be able to provide their jobs in very challenging times like these times right now,” he said.