The Jakarta Post
Former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) has called on world leaders to “do something” to defuse tensions in the Middle East following the recent killing of top Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani, fearing it could trigger a conflict that would significantly impact the current world order.
In a public statement dated Jan. 6, SBY shared his concern regarding the current state of the world following the political unrest and protests that dominated last year’s headlines. Of particular interest to him was the chain of events that ultimately led to the death of Soleimani on Jan. 3 – an event that SBY feared could endanger the lives of hundreds of millions of people living in Iran and the rest of the world.
“Personally, I am not among those who immediately believe that the crisis in the Middle East will lead to an all-out war, let alone another World War. But I do have a right to be concerned and call on world leaders to do something [about the crisis],” he wrote in the statement.
“It’s too dangerous to leave the fate of the world, especially the lives of over 600 million of our brothers and sisters who live in that region, in the hands of politicians and generals in the United States, Iran and Iraq.”
SBY said that every world leader should feel obligated to prevent any future "strategic miscalculation", given that similar miscalculations were responsible for kicking off the two World Wars.
“Wars could easily happen under erratic and warlike leaders. Right now, history is testing President [Donald] Trump and [Iranian President] Hassan Rouhani – whether or not they will be remembered as erratic and warlike leaders,” he wrote.
The US announced on Friday that it had killed the top Iranian general — the commander of the Iranian Quds Forces — in a strike on Baghdad's international airport, in which the deputy chief of Iraq's powerful Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary force was also killed.
AFP reported that the US had launched another air strike in Iraq on Saturday.
Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi summoned Iranian Ambassador to Indonesia Mohammad Azad on Monday evening and later US Ambassador Joseph R. Donovan Jr. to raise concerns about the situation between the two countries. (rfa)