The Jakarta Post
President Joko 'Jokowi' Widodo has said that in the next five years, the development of Indonesia's defense force will aim to not only maintain minimum essential forces but also to strengthen Indonesia's identity as a maritime country.
Therefore, the President aims to develop the Indonesian Military as a regional maritime force respected by countries in the East Asia region.
'In doing so, we hope that the Indonesian Military can be more ready to face various types of war, especially in tune with our geographic status as a maritime country,' he said as quoted by tempo.co, during the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Indonesian Military at Indah Kiat Port in Banten on Monday.
To do this, the President said Indonesia needed to increase its national defense capacity by creating a professional Indonesian Military.
'As a professional soldier, an Indonesian Military [TNI] soldier must be fully educated and well trained. A TNI soldier has to continuously increase his or her capacity by carrying out regular training,' said Jokowi.
To develop the defense force, he said, Indonesia must be able to fulfil its primary weaponry defense system (Alutsista) needs in an integrated way, involving the three defense components, namely the Indonesian Army, Navy and Air Force.
'Currently, almost all countries are competing to push forward their defense technology. We are also developing a stronger Indonesian Military outfit that is supported by a full, more-modern defense system,' said Jokowi.
'Modernizing defense technologies is an important step for getting us ready to continuously adapt to current developments.'
The President said the government was striving to realize the country's defense sovereignty by developing its national defense industry to reduce its dependence on imported defense equipment.
Jokowi said in his remarks that members of the Indonesian Military must assert their identity as soldiers for the Indonesian people.
'As the people's soldiers, TNI personnel are not allowed to forget their people. TNI personnel should not hurt the hearts of their people. TNI personnel are not allowed to distance themselves from their people; they must stay with them. Only by walking together with all Indonesians, will TNI personnel be strong in carrying out their duties for the country and the nation [...],' he said at the ceremony.
Indonesian Military commander Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo, National Police chief Gen. Badrodin Haiti, Army, Navy and Air Force chiefs of staff as well as President Jokowi's working cabinet members attended the ceremony. (ags/ebf)
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