Indonesia reiterates urgency to conduct South China Sea patrols

Indonesia reiterates urgency to conduct South China Sea patrols

China's military when holding exercises in the South China Sea some time ago.(DTN News)

Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu pointed out that the operation can be a positive effort to overcome the tensions in the South China Sea that involve several ASEAN countries and China.
Beijing (ANTARA News) - Indonesia has highlighted the urgent need to conduct joint military patrols by the ASEAN countries and China to overcome the tensions in the South China Sea.

"We will explain to the United States about the purpose of conducting joint sea patrols in South China Sea by the ASEAN countries and China," Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu stated here on Friday.

Ryamizard noted that the United States should not be alarmed about the Indonesian proposal to conduct joint sea patrols in the South China Sea.

The minister pointed out that the operation can be a positive effort to overcome the tensions in the South China Sea that involve several ASEAN countries and China.

According to Ryamizard, Indonesia is committed to maintaining peace and stability in South China Sea.

"Thus, we proposed to conduct joint patrols by the related parties in the South China Sea region, such as the ASEAN countries and China to maintain peace and stability in the region," the minister said.

He added that the countries need to intensely communicate to tackle the challenges posed by the South China Sea issue.

"Indonesia is committed to supporting all parties that prioritize peace and stability in the South China Sea. If the sea lanes are secure, then the trade route will also be safe, which could improve economic development and regional prosperity," Ryamizard pointed out.

The minister is scheduled to visit Beijing in China on October 13-18, 2015.

Additionally, Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan noted that the regional security situation, particularly in the South China Sea, has reached a crucial stage and must be solved.

"The arrival of the United States in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly its maneuvers in the South China Sea, have raised tensions," Chang affirmed.

He affirmed that the political situation in each country of the region also affects the security situation in the waters.

"I agree that other threats, such as terrorism, drug trafficking, and natural disasters have also become security threats in the region that need further settlement," Chang pointed out.

The Chinese defense minister pointed out that Indonesia is an influential state and has an important role in the ASEAN. Thus, China supports Indonesia to hold a dialogue between China and the ASEAN countries as well as to conduct joint patrols to promote peace in the South China Sea.

Previously, tensions between the ASEAN countries and China had escalated due to the Chinese government establishing military posts in the South China Sea.

The United States government and Southeast Asian countries have warned Beijing to stop their military activities in the region. Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Brunei Darussalam have territorial disputes with China.

The United States government is disappointed with China as its military had driven away some jet fighters of the United States that were flying over the South China Sea, which is considered as an international airspace.(*)

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