Press Statement of President of the Republic of Indonesia on the Hosting of FIFA U-20 World Cup, at the Merdeka Palace, DKI Jakarta Province, March 27, 2023

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 28 Maret 2023
Category: Press Statement @en
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Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Esteemed Guests.

First, this is about principle that Indonesia has always been consistent and firm in supporting the Palestinian independence cause and the completion of a two-state solution between an Israeli state and an independent Palestinian state. This is in compliance with our Constitution. We refuse colonialism in any form as we always convey in bilateral, multilateral, and other international fora.

I also take this opportunity to convey that Indonesia has gone through a long bidding and selection process to host the U-20 World Cup and managed to outperform Brazil and Peru in the final stage. At that time, all parties struggled and worked hard together so Indonesia can host the U-20 World Cup. And finally, in October 2019, Indonesia was appointed by FIFA to host the U-20 World Cup. It was an honor for the Indonesian people to host a sporting event with the most fans around the world.

We had no idea about the participating team because it was still in the pre-qualification process. We only found out about the Israeli national team has passed the selection for the FIFA U-20 World Cup in July 2022. I can assure that Israel’s participation in the FIFA U-20 World Cup has no relation to Indonesia’s consistent foreign policy stance on Palestine because our support for the Palestinian cause has always been solid and strong. In this regard, we agree with the Palestinian Ambassador to Indonesia that FIFA member associations must obey the rules. Hence, we cannot mix up sports and politics.

Currently, FIFA is also aware of the rejection of the Israeli national team’s participation in the U-20 World Cup. However, both the Government and Indonesia’s football governing body PSSI are still striving to seek the best solution.

Therefore, I have delegated PSSI Chief, Mr. Erick Thohir, to meet with FIFA team to resolve the issue.

That concludes my statement.
Thank you.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.


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