10 interesting facts about King Salman's visit to Indonesia

Saudi King Salman, left, shakes hands with Indonesian President Joko Widodo during their meeting at the presidential palace in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia, Wednesday, March 1, 2017. Salman arrived in the world's largest Muslim nation on Wednesday as part of a multi-nation tour aimed at boosting economic ties with Asia.
PHOTO: Reuters

King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia is set to land in Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in East Jakarta on Wednesday. The seventh Saudi Arabian king will be in Indonesia for a state visit from March 1 to 9.

Saudi King Salman, left, and Indonesian President Joko Widodo wave to the media during their meeting at the presidential palace in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia, Wednesday, March 1, 2017.Photo: Reuters

The special occasion is highly celebrated as the last time a Saudi king visited Jakarta was in 1970, when King Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud visited the country.

Prior to the king's visit, the government has implemented several measures to ensure his safety and comfort. Here are 10 interesting facts about King Salman's trip to Indonesia.

Six-nation Asian tour

King Salman's visit to Indonesia is part of his six-nation Asian tour. According to the Gulf News, the tour kicked off in Malaysia on Feb. 26. Indonesia is King Salman's second destination before travelling to Japan, China, the Maldives and Jordan.

Saudi king visits Indonesia bringing along huge entourage, limos, escalators

  • A Boeing 747 transporting Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz makes its final approach for landing at the Bali International Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar on Indonesia's resort island of Bali on March 4, 2017.
  • A motorcade transporting Saudi King Salman leaves following the king's arrival at the Bali International Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar.
  • King Salman is staying at luxe resort St. Regis Bali.
  • Amid tight security on Sunday afternoon, the Saudi ruler enjoyed a short time at the beach.
  • The hotel's management has built walkways to the beach and erected bamboo fencing covered in white fabric to provide privacy for the king, despite the beach not being closed.
  • King Salman's staff had booked out the hotel entirely.
  • Saudi King Salman is visiting the Indonesian resort island of Bali from March 4 to 9.
  • The 81-year-old ruler is enjoying the sea breeze, soft white sand and sparkling blue water of Geger Beach, Nusa Dua.
  • Limousines are parked outside a government tourism office in the luxury resort area of Nusa Dua.
  • The king and his large entourage, along with nearly 500 tons of luggage, arrived in Bali on Saturday afternoon.
  • Balinese Hindu local security called "Pecalang" stand guard during a security preparation.
  • A policeman puts a sticker on a police patrol car during their preparation for King Salman's visit.
  • King Salman opted to stay in the hotel, which his staff had booked out entirely.
  • Local authorities have taken steps to increase security at Bali's most popular destinations, such as Uluwatu Temple, Garuda Wisnu Kencana Park and Ubud's famous rice terraces.
  • King Salman decided to spend his holiday in Bali because he likes the sea.
  • The government has taken VVIP security measures to safeguard King Salman in Bali.
  • As many as 2,500 police and Indonesian Military (TNI) personnel have been deployed.
  • Along with two warships and four smaller vessels in Bali waters.
  • King Salman of Saudi Arabia rides in a golf cart driven by Indonesian President Joko Widodo at the presidential palace in Jakarta, Indonesia
  • Saudi Arabia's King Salman stands as he prays at Istiqlal mosque in Jakarta
  • Saudi Arabia's King Salman called for a united fight against terrorism in a speech to Indonesia's parliament during a landmark state visit to the world's most populous Muslim-majority country.
  • King Salman began the first visit by a Saudi monarch to Indonesia in almost 50 years, seeking to strengthen economic ties with the world's most populous Muslim-majority country.
  • The king - who is accompanied by about 1,000 people, including princes and ministers
  • - disembarked from his official plane at a Jakarta airport and was welcomed by President Joko Widodo and a guard of honour.
  • Almost 460 tons of equipment have been flown in for the visit, including Mercedes limousines and escalators for the king to descend from his plane.
  • Most has been transported to the resort island of Bali, where the king will take a holiday after visiting Jakarta.
  • Salman will hold talks later with Widodo at the Indonesian leader's official residence in Bogor outside the capital Jakarta.
  • The king will give a speech to parliament on Thursday.
  • Business deals could be announced, and a series of co-operation memoranda are also set to be signed on issues ranging from security, to health and education during the three-day visit to Jakarta.
  • Indonesia will also seek approval to send more citizens to the annual hajj pilgrimage in western Saudi Arabia, which is home to Islam's holiest sites.
  • Salman kicked off his three-week Asian tour in Malaysia earlier this week, and is also set to visit Japan, China and the Maldives.

1,500-strong delegation

The king apparently favors to travelling in a large group. BBC News reported that during the king's French holiday, he came with a total of 1,000 family members and friends. This time around, King Salman will be accompanied an entourage of 1,500 people, including 10 ministers and 25 princes.

25 princes

The 25 princes have been one of the most talked about topics on social media. Among them are Prince Khalid bin Fahd bin Mohammed, Prince Mansour bin Saud, Prince Mohammed bin Fahd, Prince Talal bin Saud, Prince Khalid bin Bandar, Prince Sattam bin Saud, Prince Faisal bin Khalid bin Sultan, Prince Mansour bin Muqren, Prince Mohammed bin Abdurrahman, Prince Ahmed bin Fahd bin Salman, Prince Abdulrahman bin Badr, Prince Saud bin Salman, Prince Naif bin Salman and Prince Rakan bin Salman. Antara news agency reported that Prince Faisal bin Khalid bin Sultan and Prince Abdulrahman bin Badr are active on social media.

Seven planes

Due to the size of the group, King Salman will be flying in with seven planes, which includes six Boeing planes and one Hercules.

Four hotels

Antara news agency reports that King Salman and his entourage will be staying in four hotels during his visit in Jakarta, namely The Westin Jakarta, Raffles Hotel Jakarta, Ritz-Carlton Jakarta Mega Kuningan and JW Marriott. In The Westin Jakarta, his entourage have rented 200 rooms.

Nasi kebuli and local fruits

King Salman is scheduled to have a bilateral meeting with President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo at the Bogor State Palace in Bogor, West Java, on March 1. During the short trip, King Salman and his entourage will be joining Jokowi for lunch. The lunch menu is said to comprise a wide array of local and Middle Eastern cuisine, such as nasi kebuli (rice cooked in spices).

Presidential Secretariat head Darmansjah Djumala told kompas.com that the local foods would consist grilled seafood, traditional desserts and fruits.

"[We will] introduce [them] to the local fruits. [As] we have many [variations] of fruits," said Darmansjah.

Six-day vacation in Bali

King Salman's official visit is slated to run from March 1 to 3. On March 4 to 9, the king and his entourage are set to spend time in Bali. Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika said the king only wanted rest in Bali. Up to 100 security personnel will reportedly safeguard King Salman during his six-day visit in Bali. This holiday is expected to attract more Saudi Arabian tourists to the destination.

10,000 joint security personnel

The king's safety is important, hence the National Police have prepared 10,000 personnel, including soldiers from the military, to secure the visit. The joint security team officers will be stationed in three locations, namely Jakarta, Bogor and Bali.

450 tons of cargo

Prior to his visit, King Salman has reportedly sent some of his belongings to Jakarta and Bali. With a total weight of 450 tons, his cargo includes two units of Mercedes-Benz S600 and two electric lifts. PT Jasa Angkasa Semesta (JAS) president director Adji Gunawan said of the cargo, 63 tons would be unloaded at the Halim Perdanakusuma Airport, while the remaining 396 tons would be brought to the Ngurah Rai International Airport in Denpasar, Bali.

Special arrangements for the king

On March 2, the king is scheduled to give a 10-minute speech at the House of Representatives (DPR) in Senayan, South Jakarta, and visit the Istiqlal Mosque. In addition to security, special equipment has also been arranged at the two places. The House has prepared a portable ramp and a special chair according to the 81-year-old king's request. Meanwhile, the Istiqlal Mosque has installed an elevator and added a new toilet. The elevator is meant to transport the king to the second floor, where he will be practicing a Sunnah (non-obligatory) prayer.

Read also: Indonesia parliament prepares for Saudi King Salman's visit
Saudi king signs range of deals in Indonesia at start of visit

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