Indonesia seeks answers from US as top general denied entry

JAKARTA: Indonesia's government is seeking clarification from the US after the Indonesian military chief was denied entry to the country, an official said Sunday.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir said the Indonesian Embassy in Washington had sent a diplomatic note to the State Department.

Nasir said the US ambassador to Indonesia was not in the country and his deputy has been summoned to provide more information on Monday.

Military spokesman Wuryanto, who goes by one name, said military chief Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo and his wife had planned to leave Indonesia on Saturday evening but were told by their airline shortly before departure that US Customs would deny their entry.

Nurmantyo had been invited to attend a conference on extremist organizations in Washington by Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Relations between the US and Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation, are generally friendly.

Indonesia's military has a checkered human rights record, but Nurmantyo himself has not been accused of rights abuses.