Indonesia Urges China, Japan to Solve Island Row through Direct Parleys

JAKARTA ~

Indonesia hopes that China and Japan communicate directly with each other to solve the conflict surrounding the ownership of the Senkaku/Diayou Islands located in southwest of Japan, Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said.

“I said to General Chang this morning that Indonesia does not expect to see an open conflict between China and Japan because it will have big impact on the stability and security of Asia,” Purnomo stated after meeting with his Chinese counterpart General Chang Wanquan on Monday.

Asked about Chinas border row in the South China Sea with some ASEAN countries, namely the Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia, Purnomo pointed out that currently representatives from related parties were still negotiating a Code of Conduct, which will regulate countries behavior in the conflict area.

Earlier, Japan and Southeast Asian countries, including Indonesia, had agreed on the importance of ariel freedom during a summit in Tokyo. The statement was made after China announced a controversial air defence zone.

During the summit, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) had agreed to enhance co-operation to ensure freedom of flight and civil aviation safety.

“We underscored the importance of maintaining peace, stability and prosperity in the region and promoting maritime security and safety, freedom of navigation and resolving the disputes through peaceful means.” Abe stated.

The statement was considered as a mild regional rebuke for China, which has sovereignty disputes with Japan and with four members of the block, and which has been repeatedly accused of intimidation and coercion.

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