STRATEGIC ASSESSMENT. President Jokowi and Chinese President Xi Jinping exchanged views on the Gaza situation in a meeting in Beijing, highlighting the importance of de-escalating the situation arising from Israel’s war against Hamas.
“Indonesia and China have the same view of focusing on humanitarian issues,” said a written statement shared by the Palace Press Bureau regarding discussions at Jokowi and Xi’s meeting at the Great Hall of the People, Beijing.
Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi talked with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi during her visit in China. Minister Retno on her X account said she had a conversation with Minister Wang Yi on the situation in Gaza and underlining the importance of de-escalation of conflict, as well as focusing on humanitarian issues.
Meanwhile, China said it had sent humanitarian aid to meet the urgent needs of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
The Indonesian government has strongly condemned the explosion at the Al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza that killed hundreds saying that it was caused by an Israeli air strike. “The attack clearly violates the international humanitarian law,” the Foreign Ministry said in an official statement. “Indonesia urges the international community, especially the UNSC, to immediately take concrete steps to stop attacks and acts of violence in Gaza amid the high casualty among the civilians.”
Kemlu spokesperson Lalu Muhammad Iqbal said Jakarta had concluded that the Israeli military was responsible for the attack but did not clarify whether the government reached such a conclusion after communication with external countries.
The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) urges the U.N. Security Council and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to immediately take concrete steps to respond to Israeli attack on a hospital in Gaza, Palestine.
Regarding the attack, MUI official Sudarnoto Abdul Hakim said that the Israeli troops and authorities were increasingly losing control and common sense and had become bankrupt and defeated morally and politically.
Sudarnoto also added that the United States and NATO were directly involved in the most cruel war crimes and genocide in this century. Therefore, MUI is calling on other countries, including Indonesia, to join in finding a way to try Israel in international courts.
U.S. President Joe Biden condemned the attack on the Al Ahli Baptist Hospital in the Palestinian Gaza Strip. “I was outraged and deeply saddened by the explosion at the Al Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza, and the terrible loss of life that resulted,” said Biden in a statement. However, Biden did not explicitly blame Israel for the attack. Biden also said that his team was looking for further information about the attack.
The United States on Wednesday announced humanitarian assistance worth $100 million (equivalent to IDR1.58 trillion) for Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. U.S. President Joe Biden announced this assistance during a visit to Tel Aviv, Israel.
In a White House statement released on its website, the funds will be used to provide basic needs for more than one million Palestinians who have been forced to flee or become victims of conflict, including the provision of clean water, food, sanitation facilities, health services, and other essential needs.
Blinken contacted Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas by phone and expressed U.S. support for the Palestinian people, according to an official statement from the U.S. Department of State. Blinken is also said to Abbas that Hamas does not represent the Palestinian people, and its aspirations for independence and its views on the dignity, freedom, security, and justice of citizens cannot be considered part of Palestine.
The U.S. will send $100 million in aid for humanitarian assistance to civilians in Gaza and the West Bank, President Joe Biden said on Wednesday.
“This money will support more than 1 million displaced in conflict affected Palestinians, including emergency needs in Gaza,” Biden said Wednesday during a speech in Tel Aviv.
The announcement comes after a massive blast rocked a Gaza City hospital killing hundreds of people. Hamas blamed the explosion on Israel, while the Israeli military said the hospital was hit by a rocket misfired by Palestinian militants. Biden has so far sided with Israeli officials, telling Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the attack appeared to be carried out “by the other team.”
Julia Lau, Senior Fellow and Co-Coordinator of the Indonesia Studies Programme, and Editor, Fulcrum at ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute, the crisis sparked by the brutal Hamas attack on Israel on 7 October 2023 has potentially significant implications for Indonesia.
A longstanding supporter of the Palestinian cause and the world’s most populous Muslim majority nation-state, Indonesia and many of its people have consistently sympathised with Palestinians in Gaza and contributed to capacity-building to prepare for an independent Palestinian state.
Prior to 7 October, Indonesia had expressed hope that there would be a “peace incentive package” to “revitalise the long-stalled peace negotiation process” on Palestine. These phrases were in the Indonesian foreign minister’s official statement in mid-September, read out at the sidelines of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
However, the latest violence sparked by Hamas and the ensuing conflagration complicate Indonesia’s Palestinian policy. The current violence almost certainly rings the death knell for the peace process. Indonesia’s calls for an immediate ceasefire and end of violence, like those of other nations, are falling on deaf ears.
Regarding 10 Indonesian citizens trapped in the Gaza Strip, Marsudi said “I am having communication with representatives of Indonesian citizens in Gaza almost every day. But, as the situation is still difficult, evacuation cannot be carried out yet.” She said she was continuing to talk with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and other parties.
During a bilateral meeting with Saudi Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman al-Saud (MBS) at Al-Yamamah Palace, Riyadh, President Jokowi invited the Saudi Arabian government as the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) chair to work together to help stop the escalation of attacks in Palestine.
“This is the time for the world to stand together to stop escalation of conflict, prioritize humanitarian issues, and resolve the root of the problem according to agreed international parameters,” Jokowi said.
The 16 ASEAN and GCC member countries have agreed to open full access for humanitarian support for Palestine, Indonesian President Jokowi said during the ASEAN-GCC Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, which was broadcast via YouTube. In addition, ASEAN and GCC have also agreed to work toward ending the violence in Gaza.
Jokowi said the summit has a very important meaning: Indonesia, ASEAN, and GCC have continued to agree to increase cooperation in the midst of an increasingly divided global situation. He also called for an end to the violence in Gaza and emphasized that humanitarian issues must be made a priority amid the conflict between Israel and Hamas.
Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson Lalu Muhamad Iqbal gave way to people who wanted to raise humanitarian aid for the people of Gaza because Israel only allows 20 trucks into Gaza. To increase humanitarian access, Indonesia continues to work with a number of countries, including the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
This is because there are only 20 aid trucks for the more than two million Gazans under Israeli siege. He claimed that Indonesia is working to establish a humanitarian corridor to deliver aid to Gaza residents.
President Jokowi called on Saudi Arabia to jointly stop the escalation of conflict in Gaza to prevent it from increasing. “Indonesia strongly condemns Israeli attack on Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital in Gaza which resulted in hundreds of civilian casualties,” he said during a bilateral meeting with Saudi Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman al-Saud at the Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh.
Hundreds of protesters took to the streets to enliven the pro-Palestinian demonstration in front of the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, marching in a long procession to the U.N. office in the Menteng area of Central Jakarta. In addition to speeches, the crowd burned Israeli flags and photos of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
People were seen carrying placards criticizing Israel for its occupation of Palestinian territories and the United States for funding Israel.
Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) official Sudarnoto Abdul Hakim said the council would soon meet U.S. representatives in Jakarta as response to the heating up of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, killing thousands of people.
“In a modern era that is so open, dehumanization, the systemic destruction of humanity that is supported by United States do not make sense, it doesn’t make sense in the civilized logic of modern civilization, it’s primitive,” said Sudarnoto.