Widodo underlines relations with Australia still strong

Day after Indonesia military says bilateral cooperation off, president says instructed defense minister to find solution

Widodo underlines relations with Australia still strong

World Bulletin / News Desk

President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has underlined Indonesia and Australia's strong bilateral relations as he seeks a diplomatic solution to a crisis that saw the Indonesian military announce that all cooperation between the two countries defense forces had been suspended.

Talking to reporters Thursday, Widodo said he had since received reports from Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu and Indonesian Military (TNI) Commander Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo with regard to the suspension.

“I think that Indonesia and Australia have agreed to respect each other and not interfere in each other’s home affairs. I have instructed the defense minister and the TNI commander to resolve the problems,” Kompas.com reported Jokowi as saying.

On Wednesday, an Indonesian special guard instructor visiting a training facility in Perth, Australia, is reported to have seen laminated “material” considered insulting toward Indonesia’s national principle of “Pancasila” -- under which the country’s diverse ethnicities and religions are unified.

Reports also referred to another incident in which a member of the special guard found teaching materials at military headquarters in Australia deemed to be offensive to Indonesia’s military.

Indonesian army spokesman Maj. Gen. Wuryanto -- who like many Indonesians uses one name -- has cited "technical problems" as the reason for the suspension but refused to provide further details.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 05 Ocak 2017, 14:35