Jakarta (ANTARA) - Youth and Sports Minister Dito Ariotedjo accompanied Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi to a meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vanuatu Jotham Napat at Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) Stadium, Jakarta, on Friday.

Minister Ariotedjo said the meeting was held at the initiative of Minister Marsudi, who has adopted sports, especially football, as one of the country's instruments of diplomacy to strengthen its relationship with the South Pacific country.

"So, the Vanuatu Foreign Affairs Minister is a football fan. This meeting was held as Madam Minister's diplomatic approach to Vanuatu with the aim of strengthening the regions of Papua and Asia-Pacific," Ariotedjo informed in a written statement.

He affirmed that Minister Marsudi took the initiative to carry out diplomacy and lobbying, while indulging her Vanuatu counterpart in his favorite sport.

On the occasion, he said Napat was impressed with GBK Stadium, which has a huge capacity to accommodate supporters.

"Minister Napat was very impressed (by the stadium), since his country only has stadiums with a capacity of three thousand (spectators), while this (GBK) has 70 thousand. So, he was very happy and interested in Indonesia and its sports," he said.

Earlier, on the same day, Minister Marsudi received a visit from Minister Napat at Pancasila Building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Napat came to discuss a number of matters, including cooperation in the economic, development, and partnership fields in the Pacific.

His visit was the first by a Vanuatu foreign affairs minister to Indonesia in more than a decade.

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Translator: A Rauf Andar, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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