Boyolali, C Java (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin released Hajj pilgrims from Kudus District, Central Java, who are Cluster 70 members, to Saudi Arabia through Adi Soemarmo Airport here on Friday.

VP Amin, who was accompanied by Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas, Mayor of Surakarta Gibran Rakabuming Raka, and Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to Indonesia, also got on the aircraft that would carry the pilgrims.

The VP said that this year’s Indonesian Hajj pilgrims get a fast-track examination of their documents by the Saudi Arabian immigration carried out in Indonesia.

"This is supposed to be done in Saudi Arabia, but now, the arrangement is in Indonesia. We are the only country that got three places (for special immigration check), namely embarkation from Jakarta, Surabaya, and Solo,” VP Amin remarked.

He added that this is a form of preferential treatment from the Government of Saudi Arabia to Indonesia.

“The relationship between the two countries is so close and intimate that we are given privileges," he said.

He stated that Indonesia this year was also given an additional quota for Hajj pilgrims, reaching as many as 20 thousand, and other additional benefits.

Hence, Amin expected that the Hajj implementation next year would have more regions that have special immigration checks and also more quota for pilgrims.

Amin explained that if the fast-track immigration is conducted in Saudi Arabia, it can take about five hours, albeit only five minutes per person in Indonesia.

Nevertheless, he ensured that the government would provide better Hajj services, including accommodation and health services.

The Hajj pilgrims welcome the health check facility, as they can be examined in Indonesia. Related news: 24 Hajj pilgrims detained in S Arabia for visa violation
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Translator: Bambang, Kenzu
Editor: Atman Ahdiat
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