King Salman scheduled to meet leaders of Islamic groups

King Salman scheduled to meet leaders of Islamic groups

Saudi Ambassador to Indonesia Osama bin Mohammed Abdullah Al Shuaibi (second left) giving press statement at the embassy on Tuesday (Feb 28). King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud of Saudi Arabia is scheduled to visit Indonesia on 1-9 March 2017. ((ANTARA/Azis Kurmala))

The Indonesian government will determine names of the leaders
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud of Saudi Arabia is scheduled to meet a number of leaders of Islamic organizations during his state visit in Indonesia.

"I can not mention the names of leaders of Islamic groups. The Indonesian government will determine names of the leaders," Saudi Ambassador to Indonesia Osama bin Mohammed Abdullah Al Shuaibi stated in a press conference here on Tuesday.

On Wednesday (March 1), King Salman will hold bilateral meeting with President Joko Widodo at the Bogor Palace.

Both leaders will sign 10 memorandums of understanding (MoU) during the bilateral meeting.

Ten cooperation agreements includes security, health, education, culture, investment, small medium enterprises, agriculture, fisheries, civil aviation operations, as well as Islamic affairs.

From the Bogor Presidential Palace, the Saudi king and entourage will visit the House of Representatives/Peoples Consultative Assembly (DPR/MPR) building and then perform prayers at Istiqlal Mosque in Jakarta.

Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin earlier stated that the government was ready to facilitate the meetings of Islamic organizations with Saudi Arabias King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

"The Saudi Arabian king will meet the religious leaders in his visit," the minister said.

The minister also said the government would facilitate the meeting between King Salman and his delegation members and leaders of other religions.

Meanwhile, a Middle East observer of the University of Indonesia Dr Yon Machmudi opined that the visit of the king of Saudi Arabia will have a very significant meaning and strategy for both countries.

"Seen from two sides, this visit to Indonesia is very important because first, it will be the first for the king of Saudi Arabia since the past 47 years, and the second is the change in world politics, especially in the United States which is hostile to Islam and the Middle East," Machmudi remarked.

Machmudi noted that discriminatory policies of US President Donald Trump against Islam and the Middle East had made investors from Middle East counties feel uncomfortable.

"But Indonesia as the largest Muslim country in the world begins to become the target of investors from countries in the Middle East region," he said.

Machmudi opined that since the leadership of King Abdullah (2005-2015), there has been a shift in the direction of foreign policy of Saudi Arabia by making Asia as an alternative partner in place of Western hegemony.

(T.A063/KR-BSR/B003/B019)

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