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Israel’s Netanyahu met senior Indonesia official in New York

October 2, 2018 at 9:28 am

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Brussels, Belgium on 11 December 2017 [Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had a secret meeting with Indonesian Vice-President, Jusuf Kalla on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York last week, Israeli Army Radio said.

According to the report, Netanyahu met last week with many Middle Eastern leaders including “an official in the largest Islamic country in the world that has not established diplomatic relations with Israel”.

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The meeting was kept secret at the request of Jakarta, the report continued.

The Israeli Prime Minister’s Office did not comment on the news.

“There were warm relations between Tel Aviv and Jakarta in the 1990s, under the rule of former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, and since then, contacts between the two countries have been largely secret, in the light of the pro-Palestinian public opinion in Indonesia,” it added.

Earlier in June, Tel Aviv and Jakarta announced the lifting of restrictions on tourism between the two countries.

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On Saturday, Israeli Communications Minister Ayoob Kara said that Netanyahu has held meetings with leaders from the Middle East away from the media.

Netanyahu remarked on Kara’s statements saying “I do not know which leaders you’re talking about, there’s nothing like that”.