Indonesian President Joko Widodo has assured Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas that Jakarta will not join the tide of Arab and Muslim countries normalizing their ties with Israel until after a Palestinian state has been established.
“Despite the rapid changes in the Middle East, Indonesia will not take any steps to normalize with Israel until a permanent and comprehensive peace is achieved between the Palestinians and the Israelis,” Widodo tells Abbas in a phone call, according to a readout published by the PA’s official Wafa news agency.
Widodo went on to express his devotion to the Palestinian cause, his rejection of the recent normalization agreements reached by the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan with Israel, and his commitment to a two-state solution to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Wafa reports.
Abbas thanks the Indonesian president for his support and updates Widodo on the latest developments relating to Ramallah’s efforts at achieving statehood, according to the report.
Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, has never had formal diplomatic ties with Israel and has long been a longtime supporter of Palestinian aspirations for statehood.
Israeli officials have in the past spoken of clandestine links and called for the establishment of formal ties, but have been rebuffed by the Indonesian government.
According to an unsourced Friday Channel 13 report, Indonesia is on a shortlist of Muslim countries in Asia that are eager to normalize with Israel.