Ministers and spiritual leaders in Bali have expressed their hopes that the upcoming G20 Summit will be an opportunity to create international peace. Lead organizer for the event in Indonesia, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, has shared his hopes that the event will be a platform for Russia to resolve their conflict with Ukraine; in essence, ending the war.
At a ceremony held in Bali on Wednesday evening at the Peninsula ITDC in Nusa Dua, Minster Pandjaitan and spiritual leaders held a traditional prayer for the event’s success. Minister Pandjaitan said, ‘later [we pray] the world’s leaders will gather here in peace, Ukraine with…Russia peace, America and China can meet [here]’.
He continued ‘President Jokowi will be a bridge to overcome these differences. These efforts will certainly be made and are being carried out, we pray for all of them’. When he was asked whether it remained the case that all world leaders from the G20 nations would be in attendance, as was confirmed a few weeks ago, Minister Pandjaitan said that he had asked all parties to pray that world leaders would attend together and in peaceful circumstances.
Minister Pandjaitan shared his appreciation for the Governor of Bali, Wayan Koster, who was also in attendance at the event. They were joined by 1200 Bali stakeholders and guests connected to the G20 Summit. A further 1,494 traditional villages and village leaders attended the ceremony online.
As the war in Ukraine rolls on, it seems that a seismic change of heart would be needed for peace to be realized within the next two to three weeks. That said, Bali is a place of spiritual healing for many, of cleansing, ritual, and reconciliation, so the hopes are perhaps not plausible.
The joint prayer was for Indonesia’s continued success and ‘glory’ while the G20 Summit goes ahead over the 15th and 16th of November. While Minister Pandjaitan wishes for Bali to be the place where Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky see eye to eye, it may be a little ambitious.
Although Ukraine is not typically a part go the G20 nations, President Zelensky and his delegation have been invited to attend the event in November to use the platform to bring peace and reconciliation where possible. Many world leaders and delegations are also heading to the COP27 Conference in Sharm El-Sheikh in Egypt that will be hosted from the 6th-18th of November, so many agendas need attention. Many delegations, ministers, and world leaders will jump from the COP27 conference onwards to Bali.
As Bali prepares for the biggest political event it has ever hosted, logistics and operations are starting to impact local people. Police Chief, Police Commissioner Bambang Yugo Pamungkas, confirmed on Tuesday, 25th October, that residents and visitors in Nusa Dua can expect road closures and travel diversions put in place from now until now the end of the conference. People in Bali can expect to see more police, army, and secret service security officers on the streets, both in uniform and covert.
Police Chief, Police Commissioner Bambang Yugo Pamungkas explained to a stakeholder meeting this week, ‘Security is the main thing. Through this activity, it is hoped that all traditional village and sub-district officials can convey to the public about security mechanisms during the G20 Summit Presidency’. Students in the area will study from home in the coming weeks, and office workers have been requested to work remotely, too, to help limit the movement of people.
He told stakeholders, ‘We apologize in advance for any inconvenience caused by these restrictions. However, we only want the implementation of the activities to be safe and successful‘.
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