Jakarta. Vice President Jusuf Kalla marked the handover of the Indonesia Hospita from the Medical Emergency Rescue (MER-C) to the people of Palestine at Taman Ismail Marzuki in Jakarta tonight.

“The construction of the hospital denoted Indonesia’s solidarity with Palestinians,” he said.

The Vice President also appreciated MER-C for taking the initiative ahead of the government in taking special action and giving alms by building a hospital in conflict-plagued Gaza, Palestine.

“This is a good example for other Muslims anywhere. Whenever our Muslim brothers are facing problems, we must help them,” he said.

Mr Kalla then recounted when he was the Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) chairman and frequently held cooperation with MER-C, he ever doubted MER-C’s dream to build the hospital. “But MER-C proved that with solidarity of all Indonesian people, the dream is at last coming true,” he said.

At the ceremony, the Vice President showed his support for Palestinian independence. However, he regretted disunity within Palestinians.

“Without unity, it is impossible for Palestine to pursue its independence,” he said.

Previously, MER-C head of presidium board Hendry Hidayatullah reported that the Indonesia Hospital in Gaza was built on a land of 1.6 hectares with 10,000 square metre used for the two-storey building which currently has 110 beds for patients.

“It costs about 126 billion rupiahs for the building and it is totally funded by donations from Indonesians,” he said, adding that the hospital was also designed and constructed by 43 MER-C volunteers sent to Gaza.

Also present at the event were Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi, Education and Culture Minister Anies Baswedan, Palestinian Minister of Health Jawad Awad, and Palestinian Ambassador to Indonesia Fariz Mehdawi.