Jokowi Respects Saudi Decision to Suspend Umrah Visa



Petir Garda Bhwana

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - President Joko Widodo or Jokowi respects Saudi Arabia's decision to suspend Umrah entry. The Kingdom made the prompt decision as precautionary measures to prevent the Coronavirus or COVID-19 from reaching their land.  

    "This goes beyond Indonesia, but all countries as well, because every nation wants to protect their citizens from the coronavirus. And we highly respect that," the president said in Jakarta, Thursday, February 27. 

    Jokowi said he cannot comment more on the issue since he had not spoken to the Home Affairs Ministry.

    The Saudi Arabia Hajj and Umrah Ministry issued a circular following the announcement of the suspension by their Foreign Affairs Ministry this morning.

    There are no details about how long the suspension would last, and the Hajj Ministry advises travel agents to cancel all bookings. The ministry so far had issued more than 2.3 million Umrah visas.

    Syam Resfiadi, chairman of the Umrah and Hajj Organizers (Sapuhi), estimated a potential loss of Rp100 billion for umrah travel services over the next two weeks. From Indonesia, he said, up to 60,000 people may have their trips canceled if their visas are barred.