Liputan6.com, Jakarta - FIFA has deleted the Indonesian anthem for the FIFA World Cup U-20 on their website and Twitter. Moreover, the tweet about the song was also deleted from the twitter account of Indonesian football association (PSSI).
The anthem entitled "Glorious" was produced by the trio Weird Genius. The song also features three young alumni of Indonesian Idol: Lyodra, Tiara Andini, and Ziva Magnolya.
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The erasure of the tweets seem eery with neither FIFA nor PSSI providing any immediate explanation. In the last few days, however, Indonesian football has been anxious whether the FIFA World Cup U-20 will take place in Indonesia after two governors publicly reject the Israel National Team to play in their provinces.
One of the governors is I Wayan Koster of the world-famous Bali Island. The other is Ganjar Pranowo of Middle Java. Both are from the same political party with the President Joko Widodo.
Not long after the rejections, FIFA cancelled the drawing for the World Cup U-20. The sudden cancellation has created anxiety among the local football fans who are eager for Indonesia to be the host of the tournament.
Indonesia is a Muslim-majority country, although the country itself is not an Islamic country. However, Indonesia generally maintains strong support for Palestine, and the public are well-aware of Israel's constant attacks and human rights violations in Gaza.
But last week, the Palestinian Ambassador in Indonesia Zuhair Al-Shun has given a calmer message. He himself said that his country would not change its trust in Indonesia even though the Israel National Team is coming to play.
Jokowi Sends Minister to Fix the Issue
In the latest development, President Joko Widodo explains that the participation of Israel in the tournament has nothing to do with Indonesian foreign policy.
"Our support to Palestine will always be firm and strong," said President Jokowi on Tuesday (28/3/2023).
President Jokowi also shows his agreement with the Ambassador of Palestine to avoid mixing up sports and politics.
"Do not mix up the sports affairs and political affairs," he said.
The president has ordered the Head of PSSI, who is also minister for state-owned companies, to communicate with FIFA and find the solutions.
"I send the Head of PSSI Mr. Erick Thohir to meet with the team from FIFA to find the best resolution, find the best solution," said the president.
Meanwhile, the acting Minister for Youth and Sports, Muhadjir Effendy, said he was confident FIFA would not give Indonesia any harsh sanctions.
"Insha Allah, FIFA is very understanding with Indonesia, and hopefully there will be none of those imagined scary sanctions," said Muhadjir.
Lizsa Egeham and Thomas contributed to this report.
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