We are focused on organizing matches and preparing our national team.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Government will guarantee the safety of all teams participating in the 2023 U-20 World Cup, including Israel, during their activities in Indonesia, Youth and Sports Minister Zainudin Amali has said.

"The Indonesian Government is providing full support for the 2023 U-20 World Cup, especially President Joko Widodo (Jokowi)," the minister affirmed in Jakarta on Wednesday.

He said that the government is coordinating with the relevant ministries and institutions to anticipate security issues and relations between countries during the event.

Amali informed that the security issues will be handled by the Coordinating Ministry for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs.

On the same occasion, Chairperson of the Indonesian Football Association (PSSI) Erick Thohir said that his association is not involved in guaranteeing the security of the participating teams.

Thohir emphasized that the security of the teams is the government's domain, while the PSSI will focus on preparing the national team.

"We are focused on organizing matches and preparing our national team," he said.

According to Amali, the Israel U-20 national team has the right to take part in the World Cup in Indonesia after being short-listed as a finalist for the 2022 U-19 European Cup.

However, Israel's achievement has not been welcomed positively by many Indonesian people. On social media, there have been calls asking the government to ban Israel from competing in the World Cup.

The Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) has also joined in such calls. "Israel was repeatedly boycotted on the sports stage. This time, PKS also bans Israel's participation in the U-20 Football World Cup! The world's colonialism must come to an end!” said a post on PKS' official Twitter account @PKSejahtera on Wednesday.

The 2023 U-20 World Cup will take place in Indonesia from May 20 to June 11, 2023.

So far, 20 countries out of a total of 24 have confirmed their participation in the World Cup: Indonesia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, the United States, Fiji, Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Ecuador, New Zealand, England, France, Israel, Italy, Slovakia, the Gambia, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tunisia.

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Translator: Michael Siahaan, Resinta S
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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