An interesting article giving an overview of the salvage of shipwrecks in Indonesia in an environment of corruption and legislation. The case of the Belitung shipwreck is also mentioned.
Indonesia’s Shipwrecks Mean Riches and Headaches
AP, via the Jakarta Globe, 31 May 2012
Mamat Evendi straps on his primitive breathing device — a garden hose attached to a compressor on the back of his wooden fishing boat. Pulling down his goggles, he splashes flippers-first into the crystal blue water.
A few minutes later he’s flashing a ‘thumbs up,’ pointing first to a massive, coral-encrusted anchor, then a bronze cannon and finally, peeking up from the sand, the buried deck of a 17th century European ship. Nearby are pieces of blue-and-white ceramics. A tiny perfume bottle. A sword handle. Broken wine flasks, one still sealed with a wooden cork.
The wreck is just 6 meters underwater, one of four pushed into view after a tsunami slammed into the Mentawai Islands of Indonesia just over a year ago. They are among possibly 10,000 vessels littering the ocean floor of what for more than a millennium has been a crossroads for world trade.
Full story here.