The Jakarta Post
Candidates in the 2019 presidential race have weighed in on the debate surrounding Australia’s recent consideration to move its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, with each camp standing on opposite sides of the argument.
Vice presidential candidate Ma’ruf Amin condemned the move, saying both Indonesia and its people have officially rejected and protested Israel’s plan to move its capital to Jerusalem.
“[Therefore,] we disagree with plans from the United States as well as other countries to move their embassies,” Ma’ruf said on Saturday as quoted by kompas.com.
In contrast, presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto said Indonesia should respect Australia’s planned move. The Gerindra Party chairman made the statement while talking to journalists on the sidelines of the Indonesia Economic Forum in Jakarta on Wednesday.
“Regarding their plan to move their embassy [in Israel], I have yet to find out why Australia is doing it. As a supporter of Palestine, we have our opinions. However, Australia is an independent and sovereign country, therefore, we must respect its sovereignty,” Prabowo said as quoted by tempo.co.
Last month, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he was open-minded to proposals to formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move his nation's embassy to the holy city.
This raised the ire of many countries, including Indonesia, a strong supporter of Palestine. Last month, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said the country was concerned about the announcement and questioned its merits. (kuk)