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Jakarta Post

Indonesia needs a post-ASEAN foreign policy

  • Rizal Sukma

    Jakarta

Jakarta   /   Tue, June 30 2009   /  10:51 am

There is nothing more irritating than being ignored. That is what is happening to Indonesia, the so-called largest country in Southeast Asia. Foreign Ministry spokesman Teuku Faizasyah revealed last week the Indonesian government had sent 35 notes of protest to Malaysia over Ambalat since 1980. However, the neighboring country, a fellow ASEAN member, has not stopped maneuvering in the area. Indonesia has been struggling to convince other fellow ASEAN members on the importance of having a credible ASEAN human rights body, during the ongoing debate on the terms of reference for it. Yet Indonesia's views seem to have fallen on deaf ears. Previously, Indonesia's views on the ASEAN Charter were also largely ignored, pushing it to compromise to accept the much tamer version of the charter at the end. Indonesia has always been forced into compromise or into a corner by ot...