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Prabowo's silence hints at Indonesia presidential run in 2024

Chosen by former rival Jokowi, defense minister goes on arms shopping spree

Prabowo Subianto arrives at the second inauguration of Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in Jakarta on Oct. 20, 2019.   © Reuters

JAKARTA -- Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto, who rode on anti-China sentiment in his failed runs against Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in two presidential elections, now appears to be getting cozy with Beijing.

China was one of the first countries Subianto visited after his surprise appointment as defense minister last October. The former opposition leader also coordinated efforts to secure personal protective equipment aid from China in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and then led welcoming ceremonies when equipment arrived in Jakarta in March and May.

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