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Indonesia, Australia strengthen cooperation in law, security

Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Mahfud MD, and Australia’s Minister of Home Affairs, Peter Dutton, stressed on bilateral cooperation in legal and security affairs during an online meeting on Tuesday.

Mahfud and Dutton also discussed issues involving regional security, repatriation of foreign terrorist fighters, maritime security cooperation, and counter-terrorism at the 7th Indonesia-Australia Ministerial Council Meeting (MCM) on Law and Security (7th RI-Australia MCM Meeting).

“We can deal with the threat of terrorism and others only with strong and sustainable cooperation, through various programs and law enforcement action plans, preventive action, deradicalization, counter terrorism, termination of funding channels and use of cyber technology by terrorist networks, illegal drugs, human trafficking, and also response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mahfud observed.

Indonesian Ambassador to Australia, Kristiarto Legowo, and chairman of the Witness and Victim Protection Agency (LPSK), Hasto Atmojo Suroyo, were present at the meeting.

The meeting was also attended by the secretary, expert staff, and deputies of the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Indonesian Navy, and the Densus 88 counterterrorism squad, among others.

At the meeting, the Coordinating Minister said bilateral, regional, and multilateral cooperation is a necessity.

“I believe that no country in the world can handle a situation like this (coronavirus pandemic) on its own,” he noted.

During the meeting, a Memorandum of Understanding was also signed on cooperation between the two countries on capacity building and increasing the protection and assistance for witnesses and victims. The MoU was signed by the chair of the LPSK and the Australian Minister of Home Affairs.

Minister Dutton said the relationship between Indonesia and Australia is very significant as the two countries are partners in the security and maritime sector.

“This collaboration is a big achievement. For us, Indonesia is an important partner in the region and has the same level of trust,” he remarked.

The two also ministers expressed their appreciation for the cooperation between the two countries so far.

“I believe that bilateral relations between Indonesia and Australia are getting stronger based on the principles of equality, mutual respect, mutual trust, and mutual benefit,” Mahfud remarked.