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Jakarta Post

RI toward a naval power? 54 years of Djoeanda Declaration

  • I Made Andi Arsana

Yogyakarta   /   Wed, December 14 2011   /  08:43 am

On the day Indonesia gained its independence from the Netherlands, its territory and jurisdiction were less than what we see today, especially for the maritime area. The maritime area between Kalimantan and Java, for example, was considered as high seas (free seas) where foreign vessels could sail freely.

At that time, Indonesia inherited law regarding maritime area from the colonial power, the Netherlands. It was the 1939 Ordinance concerning Territorial Sea and Marine Environment under which Indonesia is entitled to only 3 nautical miles (around 5.6 kilometers) of territorial sea measured from the baselines (usually coastline) of each island. Consequently, the Indonesian archipelago was divided into several groups of territories separated by one another.

This was disadvantageous because it “could not contain the archipelago within a single jurisdictional blanket” (D...