Indonesia "understands" Obama visit delay
Indonesia said Friday that it understood the decision by US President Barack Obama to postpone a much-awaited visit to the Asian nation that had been scheduled for next week, DPA reported.
The White House announced Thursday that Obama had postponed his trip to Australia and Indonesia until June, saying he had to be in the United States for a crucial final vote on health-care reform in the House of Representatives.
"We understand the reason," Foreign Minister Marty M Natalegawa said at a news conference.
"We want to underline that the postponement is not a problem for us," he said.
Obama is widely popular in Indonesia, where he lived as a child from 1967 to 1971 after his mother married an Indonesian.
His planned visit has been touted by the local media as pulang kampung, or homecoming.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono himself had suggested earlier that Obama postpone his trip to June so that the US president could be more relaxed, presidential spokesman Dino Patti Djalal said.
"If President Obama visits in June, he will be able to bring the first lady and his children," Djalal said.
"We understand that the health-care bill is very important for the government of President Obama," he added.