Appeals from all elements to keep the area safe and conducive from terrorist threats
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Minister of Religious Affairs Yaqut Cholil Qoumas invites all Christians to make the 2022 Christmas commemoration a momentum to maintain harmony in diversity.

"I invite all Christians to make this year's Christmas commemoration a momentum to care for harmony in diversity," the minister stated in a video message received here, Saturday.

Qoumas said the theme for Christmas 2022, "Their Return to Their Country by Another Way," means that diversity is a gift from God that one must be grateful for, must be cared for, and be developed continually.

According to the minister, diversity should encourage everyone to join hands in realizing a more dignified coexistence.

"By walking together, we will be able to recover faster, rise stronger. By walking together in respect for diversity, harmony will be created for a great Indonesia," he remarked.

The Indonesian National Police ensured that the 2022 Christmas and 2023 New Year celebrations would run safely and smoothly.

In addition to synergizing with the TNI, the Polri involves local governments along with community organizations (Ormas) and youth organizations in the regions.

"Appeals from all elements to keep the area safe and conducive from terrorist threats. The appeal continues to be made," National Police Chief Gen. Pol. Listyo Sigit Prabowo stated.

In line with Prabowo's statement, Military (TNI) Commander Admiral Yudo Margono said the TNI would support the national police in anticipating acts of terror.

"The TNI has anti-terror troops, we will prepare them, and together we will synergize with the Police. If it is possible that (terror attacks) occur, (then the TNI) is ready to be assisted and ready to carry it out," he stated.

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Some 100 thousand police personnel will be involved in securing the Christmas and New Year celebrations at the end of this year, a police official earlier remarked.

The personnel will be drawn from the police headquarters and related institutions, head of the audit and inspection sub-directorate of the Safety and Security Directorate of the Police's National Traffic Department, Chief Commissioner Aries Syahbudin, stated.

The security operation will not only prioritize aspects of security, safety, and smoothness but also health, he noted during an event titled "Christmas and New Year Infrastructure Readiness and Health Protocol," which was streamed on YouTube on Monday.

Akin to the 2022 Eid Exodus, the police will also prepare posts for the administration of booster vaccines to those who have not received them.

"This is one of (the forms of) our support in addition to traffic smoothness and public activity security," he stated.

According to Syahbudin, people's enthusiasm for going on vacation is very high. Moreover, the COVID-19 positive case trend has started to decline.

Nonetheless, people must remain wary of the declining case trend.

To secure this year’s celebrations, security and service posts will be set up at several points where people are expected to gather, whether on the road or at tourism locations, he stated.

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"There will be several service posts in collaboration with the Police's Dokkes (Doctor and Health) as well as the regional governments' health office," he stated.

"The Christmas and New Year operation is a humanitarian operation, which is intended to serve the people while carrying out their activities, specifically in welcoming the Christmas and New Year holidays," he remarked.

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Translator: Asep F, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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