Thursday 11 January 2024

Indonesia Is Willing to Work with ASEAN Nations to Address South China Sea Issue

President Joko Widodo's or Jokowi's arrival in the Philippines, the family of death row convict Mary Jane Veloso made an appeal.
Source:, Jakarta - Retno Marsudi, Indonesia's minister of foreign affairs, stated that her country is prepared to work with ASEAN nations to complete the Code of Conduct over the South China Sea dispute.

"With regard to the South China Sea, Indonesia is prepared to work with all ASEAN nations, including the Philippines, to complete the Code of Conduct's drafting as soon as possible," she declared on Tuesday, January 9, 2024, during a bilateral meeting with Philippine Foreign Minister Enrique Manao in Manila.

Nearly the whole South China Sea was claimed by China, and it overlapped with the exclusive economic zones of many Southeast Asian nations, including Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. China's claim was found to be without merit in 2016 by the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

The Philippines had asked its neighbors to create their own codes of conduct because it believed that China was making too little progress—the two countries have been at a standstill for the past 20 years with no sign of improvement. On November 20, the president of the Philippines, Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, said that Malaysia and Vietnam had been contacted. "Hopefully this will expand to other ASEAN countries," he added.

Minister Retno applauded the Dec. 30 Declaration on Maintaining and Promoting Stability in the Maritime Sphere in Southeast Asia made by the foreign ministers of ASEAN. Regarding the South China Sea dispute, the statement emphasized the need to "avoid actions that may further complicate the situation and pursue peaceful resolution of disputes."

"We recognize the benefits of having the South China Sea as a sea of peace, stability, cooperation, and prosperity," said the statement. ASEAN foreign ministers also highlighted the importance of the full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) and committed to working towards a substantive Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC) that is in accordance with international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS.

Retno and Manalo talked on Palestine and the Rohingya refugee crisis in addition to the South China Sea.


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