The Indonesian Minister of Defense H. Prabowo Subianto together with the Australian Defense Minister the Honorable Senator Linda Reynolds held a bilateral meeting in the Indonesia-Australia Defense Ministers' Meeting. This meeting is the highest forum to discuss defense cooperation between the two countries.
The bilateral meeting was held before the meeting of The 6th Indonesia - Australia Foreign and Defense Ministers' 2 + 2 meeting in Nusa Dua Bali, Friday.
The Indonesian Minister of Defense and Australian Minister of Defense on the occasion were accompanied by the Ministry of Defense Delegation from each of the two countries.
This bilateral meeting forum became the second meeting between the Indonesian Defense Minister and the Australian Defense Minister, where a few weeks ago the two parties also had the opportunity to hold a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the ADMM Plus forum in Bangkok.
On the occasion, the Indonesian Minister of Defense expressed that the bilateral meeting gave a more strategic meaning to the bilateral relations between Indonesia and Australia, particularly in the field of defense cooperation because as two neighboring countries, it was very important for Indonesia and Australia to build and strengthen bilateral cooperation relations, including cooperation in the defense field.
For more than half a century, defense cooperation between Indonesia and Australia has been well established, highly productive and mutually beneficial for both countries in many ways.
"The development of bilateral defense cooperation between Indonesia and Australia has been well established through dialogue forums, education and training, joint exercises and visits of officials from both countries," added the Minister of Defense.
Meetings at the working group level, both the Indonesia-Australia Defense Strategic Dialogue (IADSD) at the Ministry of Defense level and the Australia-Indonesia High Level Committee at the TNI level, have been able to increase capacity building and encourage close relations between the Armed Forces of the two countries.
According to the Indonesian Minister of Defense, the dialogue forum has become a means of exchanging perspectives and sharing information about the latest strategic security issues relating to the two countries.
With the latest information and perspectives on strategic security issues, the two countries have been able to overcome and anticipate common security challenges.
Various other productive cooperation programs such as cooperation in the field of education, exchange of visits, coordinated patrols, and joint exercises between the Armed Forces of the two countries also showed remarkable achievements, and contributed significantly to strengthening friendly relations between Indonesia and Australia in the field of defense.
In addition to discussing the achievements of cooperation that have been carried out so far, at the Indonesia-Australia Defense Ministers' Meeting meeting, also discussed various efforts to enhance defense cooperation, especially related to joint issues and challenges in the region including maritime security.
Through this effort to increase defense cooperation, the two countries want to further enhance cooperation in the field of enhancing the capabilities of peacekeepers, through cooperation in exchanging peacekeeping force instructors.
While related to maritime security issues, the Indonesian Minister of Defense said that there are a number of illegal activities that often occur in maritime areas that require joint attention of the two countries, including piracy, robbery, human trafficking, drug smuggling, and illegal fishing.
To overcome these challenges, there is no other choice but to cooperate with each other.
Meanwhile, the Australian Defense Minister said that Indonesia was a very important partner for Australia. To that end, Australia wants good relations between the two countries that have been established to be expected to continue to be improved based on the shared interests of the two broader countries.
"Australia values Australia's close relations with Indonesia as a comprehensive and strategic partnership," said the Australian Minister of Defense.
Furthermore, the Australian Defense Minister appreciated the improvement and development of defense cooperation between Indonesia and Australia that had been closely intertwined and had increased significantly from year to year.
Increased defense cooperation has contributed greatly to the close relations between the two countries.
"We appreciate the great contribution of cooperation in the defense sector to the improvement of bilateral relations between the two countries," said the Australian Defense Minister.
Also accompanying the Indonesian Minister of Defense at the Indonesia-Australia Defense Ministers' meeting meeting included the Kasum TNI, Lt. Gen. Joni Supriyanto, Irjen Kemhan Laksdya TNI (Ret.) Didit Herdiawan, Director General Strahan Kemhan Maj. Gen. Rizerius Eko HS, Director General of Strahan Kemhan Brigjen TNI Brig. Gen. I Putu Eka Asmara and the Indonesian Defense Attache at Camberra Laksma TNI Agus Rustandi. Also in charge were the Defense Minister's Special Staff, Lt. Gen. (ret) Sjafrie Sjamsoeddin and Lt. Gen. (ret.) Suryo Prabowo