RIYADH: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has announced that the Kingdom will finance the restoration of the Jakarta Islamic Center after it suffered fire damage during renovation work last month.
Wednesday’s announcement reflects the crown prince’s interest in preserving the site as “it plays a great role in educating young generations and spreading Islam’s tolerance and message of peace,” the Saudi Press Agency reported.
It added it is also “an embodiment of the fraternal relations that unite Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.”
Indonesian Ambassador Abdul Aziz Ahmad told Arab News: “I express my deepest gratitude to Crown Prince and Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman for attending the G20 Summit in Bali.
“We hope that the presence will further strengthen relations between the two countries, not only at the G20 but especially for the good relations between the two nations that have been established from thousands of years ago.
“We welcome the initiative to finance the renovation of the JIC by the Kingdom, as a reflection of the brotherly relationship between Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.
“The JIC is an important institution for spreading Islam, not only for the people of Jakarta but also for the people of Indonesia. We believe the initiative will further strengthen the brotherly relations between Indonesia and Saudi Arabia in the present and the future.”
Sheikh Abdulrahman Al-Sudais, president of the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, thanked the crown prince for supporting the restoration.
He also gave his appreciation for the backing of the Kingdom and its leadership in aiding Islamic countries, and said that Indonesia is at the forefront of regions that have enjoyed such support.
He added that the Saudi leadership is keen to support Islamic centers, initiatives and projects to help establish the concept of moderation. It was this enthusiasm that led to the decision to restore the JIC.
Saudi Minister of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance Abdullatif Al-Asheikh said that the announcement is an extension of the Kingdom’s interest in serving Islam and Muslims, based on its leadership in the Islamic world.
The minister added in a statement that the restoration confirms the crown prince’s enthusiasm for Islamic centers in all friendly countries, and for the role they provide in educating younger generations and spreading Islam’s belief in tolerance and message of peace, moderation and dialogue.
The JIC covers an area of 109,435 sq. meters and includes many facilities, including a mosque which accommodates more than 20,000 worshippers, a research studies center and a conference hall.