India and Indonesia reach a pact to fight terrorism jointly; to have annual meeting
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President of Indonesia Joko Widodo have discussed plethora of issues including issues of strategic importance, defence, security cooperation, comprehensive cooperation, cultural, people-to-people link and cooperation in responding to common challenges.
The External Affairs Ministry said that the two countries have resolved to enhance bilateral cooperation in countering terrorism, terrorist financing, money laundering, arms smuggling, trafficking in persons and cyber crime. The decided to convene the next meeting of the Security Dialogue in 2018 only. Officials were asked to convene the 3rd JWG on Combating Illicit Trafficking in Narcotics, Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and its Precursors and the 5th JWG on Combating Terrorism, to be held in June and early July 2018. It was also decided for sharing of expertise, enhancing consultation, cooperation and information sharing.
The ministry said that leaders agreed to hold Annual Summit meetings, including on the margins of multilateral events. reaffirmed the importance of parliamentary exchanges between the two democracies and encouraged regular visits of delegations between the two Parliaments. Shared Vision on Maritime Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific between India and Indonesia was another important that was discussed by leaders of both the country for stability in the region. Growing convergence in the political, strategic, defence, security and economic fields between the two countries was also outlines in the meeting.
As far as defence and security cooperation was concerned, Indonesia and India affirmed being strategic partners and maritime neighbours and both the countries must work to further strengthen and broaden the already robust defence cooperation. They signed Defence Cooperation Agreement (DCA) that will further strengthen and renew the existing cooperation for the mutual benefit of the two countries and the region.
Ministry informed that leaders noted ongoing joint exercise and training as well as paroling between their Navies and welcomed the decision to hold bilateral joint exercises between their Navies and Air Forces with an endorsement upon the finalization of Standard Operational Procedure by both Navies and Air Forces. Both sides expressed desire to institutionalize cooperation between Indonesian Defence University and National Defence College India. Progress made through the joint production of military equipments was another important talking point. MoU between PT Pindad and Bhukanvala was also concluded with collaboration between PT Pindad and Tata Motors to source defence related equipments.
Both the leaders expressed shared commitment to enhance liaison between the intelligence and law enforcement agencies of both countries, to collaborate and exchange information, and to continue their cooperation in providing each other Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters (MLA), consistent with the Treaties on MLA and Extradition. Both Leaders concurred that mutually acceptable solutions on the delimitation of maritime boundaries between the two countries should be based on the principles of international law including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
Both the Leaders noted that as mandated by the 5th Meeting of the Joint Commission between Indonesia and India, an expert level meeting was held on May 10, 2018 in Bali to explore ways in enhancing strategic technical cooperation on maritime security. They instructed experts of both countries to expedite the process in identifying the scope of strategic cooperation of mutual interest.