Obama sets Muslim outreach for Indonesia trip
(Photo: Istiqlal Mosque in Jakarta, August 18, 2003/Supri)
President Barack Obama will visit Indonesia’s largest mosque and make a major outdoor speech directed at the global Muslim community when he visits Indonesia next month, the White House said on Thursday.
Obama leaves on November 5 on a 10-day trip to India, Indonesia, South Korea and Japan. On November 10 in Jakarta, Obama will visit the Istiqlal Mosque, and then make his speech from another, outdoor location, where there could be a large crowd.
“He’ll have a chance to talk about the partnership that we’re building with Indonesia, but also to talk about some of the themes of democracy and development and our outreach to Muslim communities around the world,” deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes told a news conference.
Obama remains popular in the world’s most populous Muslim country, where he spent four years while growing up, even as confidence in him has dropped in other Muslim states since he made a major speech in Cairo in June 2009 seeking a new beginning with the Islamic world.