Indonesia asks Israel to stop digging near Palestine mosque

Jakarta — The Indonesian government has asked Israel to stop excavation work near the Al-Aqsa mosque in Palestine as it could trigger new tensions and hamper the peace process in the region, Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda said here Friday.

“We want to call Israel to terminate this (excavation),” Wirayuda told reporters, adding that “it could disturb (the activity of) the mosque that has been considered as a holy building for the Muslims in the world and create a new tension that can hinder peace process in the Middle East”.

The excavation begun on Tuesday by Israel has drawn protests from Palestinian and other Muslim countries in the region, he said.

Indonesia, which has no diplomatic relations with Israel, has been taking part in efforts to create peace in the Middle East region for some years. It has initiated a meeting of Hamas and Fatah leaders and has sent over 1,000 troops to Lebanon for peacekeeping operations.

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