Asia

Indonesia says British cruise ship must pay for coral damage

Indonesia's government says a British-owned cruise ship must pay compensation for the destruction of coral reefs in a popular tourist area known for its extensive marine biodiversity.

The 4,200-ton cruise ship M.V. Caledonian Sky ran aground in the waters of Raja Ampat in West Papua province last week, causing extensive damage to the coral reefs. Raja Ampat is an archipelago with more than 1,500 small islands, cays, and shoals known as a center of marine biodiversity.

Vice President Jusuf Kalla said Wednesday that the ship must pay for the damage it caused.

A preliminary investigation found that about 1,600 square meters (17,200 square feet) of coral in the heart of the islands was destroyed.