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Jakarta Post

[INSIGHT] Germany-FPI incident: What happened to trust?

  • Dino Patti Djalal

    The Jakarta Post

PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Fri, January 8, 2021   /  10:48 am
[INSIGHT] Germany-FPI incident: What happened to trust? A stock image illustrates lettered blocks forming the word "trust". (Shutterstock/Andrii Yalanskyi)

The recent controversy over the visit of a German Embassy staffer to the headquarters of the Islam Defenders Front (FPI) shows what happens when a diplomatic event has a brush with domestic politics. Here is what we know. On Dec. 17, 2020, an employee of the German Embassy visited the FPI headquarters in Petamburan, Central Jakarta. Her entry into the compound and the car she arrived in, which bore a diplomatic license plate, was photographed, most likely by an intelligence officer assigned to watch the goings-on at the compound. Two days later, FPI secretary-general Munarman confirmed her visit to the media and the incident went viral. Reports began to surface that the woman in question was a member of Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND). The Indonesian Foreign Ministry did not verify the speculation, only confirming that the woman was registered as a German diploma...