"As a friendly state, it is unethical for the embassy to conduct wiretapping activities; doing so, violates cooperation and tarnishes mutual trust," the House Speaker said.
Purwokerto, C Java (ANTARA News) - House Speaker Marzuki Alie said the Indonesian government must lodge a strong protest against the alleged wiretapping facilities installed at the United States Embassy in Jakarta.

"As a friendly state, it is unethical for the embassy to conduct wiretapping activities; doing so, violates cooperation and tarnishes mutual trust," the House Speaker said here on Friday.

He noted that the Houses Commission I on foreign affairs will summon the foreign ministry officials to gain some clarity on the issue.

Alie asserted that clarifications were necessary to find out whether the wiretapping was performed systematically by the US government or only by certain institutions.

"Of course we have to strongly protest against the wiretapping," he stressed.

The US embassy in Jakarta is allegedly one of the 90 sites around the world where the United States has installed wiretapping facilities.

In Asia, such facilities were also installed at the US embassies in Jakarta, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, and Yangon.

The House of Representatives Commission I Vice Chairman Agus Gumiwang condemned the United States and Australia for allegedly spying on the Indonesian government and Indonesian politicians.

"If the reports of tapping activities are confirmed, we strongly condemn the United States and Australia. The Indonesia-US and Indonesia-Australia bilateral relationships should be based on many aspects, including mutual trust," said Gumiwang in Jakarta on Friday.

According to Gumiwang, the Indonesian government should also strongly condemn these tapping activities, which prove that the United States and Australia are not true friends of Indonesia.

"Their interest in Indonesia is not greater than our interest in them," he noted.

However, Gumiwang added, Indonesia must prioritize good ethics in handling this situation with regard to maintaining its bilateral relationship with other countries.

The alleged tapping activities conducted by the United States and Australia were revealed in a report by the Sydney Morning Herald published on Oct. 31, 2013, based on allegations made by former NSA employee Edward Snowden, who said the two countries possessed tapping facilities at their embassy in Jakarta and in other cities throughout the ASEAN region, such as in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, and Yangon.

In the meantime, the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has summoned Australian Ambassador Greg Moriarty to respond to charges of wiretapping facilities being found at the Australian embassy in Jakarta, according to Director of Information and Media Siti Sofia.

"The summons of the Australian Ambassador to Indonesia Greg Moriarty was released this morning, as explained yesterday," stated Sofia.

The Foreign Ministry has demanded an explanation from the Australian government about the wiretapping facility that was built in the embassy building in Jakarta and at the Consulate General in Denpasar.

News of the wiretapping facilities broke only one day after the Sydney Morning Herald published a report identifying similar facilities at the US Embassy in Jakarta.

The Foreign Ministry holds that if the Sydney Morning Heralds reports are accurate, then these acts of espionage by the Australian government cannot be justified.(*)

Editor: Heru Purwanto
Copyright © ANTARA 2013