Indonesia Denies Having Secret Talks with Israel

20 September 2022 13:32 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaThe Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry denied the Jerusalem Post's report that the country sent a delegation to Israel for a secret visit, asserting that spreading such a hoax is the Israeli media’s old way to gain profits.

“As long as Palestine is under Israeli occupation, Indonesia will not open diplomatic relations with Israel,” the ministry’s Middle East Director Bagus Hendraning Kobarsyih told Tempo on Tuesday, September 20, 2022.

Bagus said the Israeli media often created such baseless news to frame an issue for its benefit. “This never happened and Indonesia's stance will always be the same.”

Meanwhile, the ministry’s spokesperson Teuku Faizasyah said he did not know who senior officials the article was referring to. In line with Bagus, Faizasyah emphasized that Indonesia's position has not changed and continues to put forward a "two-state solution" as a way to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

On September 19, 2022, the Jerusalem Post reported that delegations from Pakistan and Indonesia were in Israel for secret visits. It said Indonesia’s delegation was led by a senior official. 

“Reports of a diplomatic presence of the two most populous Muslim nations in the world in Israel come amid recent warming of ties between Israel and Indonesia,” it stated.

It also claimed that Indonesia and Israel’s bilateral partnerships in the trade and tourism sector have grown closer following a series of meetings, statements, and reports.

The report did not reveal details about the talks yet quoted U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken's suggestion related to the possibility of normalizing diplomatic relations between Indonesia and Israel during a meeting with officials in Jakarta last December.

DANIEL AHMAD

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