The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany will refuse Indonesian passports without the signature column on the back of the passport.
Indonesian citizens will be denied entry to the country under the decision.
“From now on, Indonesian passports without a signature column cannot be processed. This matter is being investigated in collaboration between the competent German and Indonesian government agencies,” said the German Embassy in Jakarta in a statement on its official website.
Currently, passports without a signature column cannot be used to apply for either a Schengen or national visa.
Indonesian citizens who have a passport without a signature column and have obtained a visa from the German Embassy are advised to cancel their travel plans to Germany even though they have received a visa. This is because there is a possibility that they will be refused entry at the German border.
“You will most likely be denied entry to German territory at the border,” the embassy continued.
Related to this, the Head of Public Relations of the Indonesian Law and Human Rights Ministry, Tubagus Erif Faturahman, said the Directorate General of Immigration would issue a circular for new passports.
“Later, the Director General of Immigration will make a notification letter to the Immigration Office which contains a declaration column in the passport which allows a signature on the passport,” he said.
He also stated that he did not know the reason Germany issued such a regulation. According to him, Germany did not provide any explanation regarding the rejection of the new passport.
Meanwhile, the Public Relations Officer of the Directorate General of Immigration, Achmad Nur Saleh, said that his team is currently communicating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and the German Embassy to discuss the issue. He also apologise for what was happening.
“The Directorate General of Immigration apologises for this problem which has a direct impact on people who are applying for a German visa or whose visa has been issued, but cannot go to Germany,” concluded Saleh.