RI, Philippines discuss efforts to enhance defense cooperation

22 June, 2016 | Source: Antara News

Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu paid a courtesy call to his Philippine counterpart Gazmin T Voltaire in Manila on Tuesday to discuss efforts to strengthen the already existing good defense cooperation between the two countries.

The strong bilateral relations between the two neighboring countries will hopefully help strengthen trilateral cooperation involving Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia, particularly in the field of maritime security cooperation, Voltaire said in a press statement released on Tuesday.

"Strong bilateral ties between the two countries will help strengthen trilateral ties to ensure security in the region. What is more, Indonesia and the Philippines had signed a border agreement in 1975 and a maritime border delimitation agreement in 2014," he added.

The Philippine secretary of defense further stated that the trilateral meeting held on Monday (June 20) resulted in a commitment to take steps in favor of maintaining stability in the region. This way the three countries will contribute efficiently to the goals they set through these agreements.

At the meeting, Voltaire also expressed gratitude to Indonesia for its active contribution to the international monitoring team in Mindanau where the Philippine government has reached a final agreement with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Meanwhile, Ryacudu said since the trilateral meeting held in Vientiane, Laos, on the sidelines of the ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (ADMM), it was clear that the defense ministers of Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines shared the same ideas. Therefore, he expressed the hope that this trilateral cooperation can immediately start contributing to usher a sense of security and stability in the region.

The Indonesian defense minister said he was aware that the initial steps taken as part of the trilateral cooperation were far from being enough and needed improvement in the future. However, the defense ministries of the three countries shared the same view about modalities to maintain security and stability in the region.

He expressed the hope that a stable ASEAN may set an example for the rest of the world. (*)

 

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