Indonesia: Denmark’s Diplomatic Pull-Out “Too Hasty”

“We see the decision as being a bit too hasty.” Such was the reaction from Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda on Sunday after the Danish government chose to pull out all of the embassy staff – including the ambassador – from Jakarta early on Saturday.

According to Mr. Wirayuda, Indonesia had provided adequate protection for the Danish diplomats and thus he saw “no good reason” for them to leave.
“They said they received threats through the telephone, but we have no way to confirm that. We have heard of such things before and usually they are only rhetoric,” he told the international media this weekend.

When announcing the diplomatic pull-out on Saturday, Denmark’s Foreign Ministry said that it did not want to take any chances when it comes to the security of the embassy personnel.
“We have received some very serious and specific warnings that we believe to be credible – warnings that we simply cannot ignore,” said spokesman Lars Thuesen.
Danes are still urged to leave Indonesia as soon as possible – a warning that not everyone has chosen to adhere to. So far, most of the Danish tourists have been pulled out, while only some of the Danes living in Indonesia have chosen to go to neighbouring non-Muslim countries like Singapore or Thailand.

In an interview on CNN’s Late Edition on Sunday, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that the temporary pull-out should not be seen as an interruption of the diplomatic ties between Denmark and Indonesia.

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