Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Australian Embassy in Jakarta in a press statement on Thursday has denied the involvement of President Yudhoyono and former president Megawati Soekarnoputri in the banknote graft case investigated by the Australian authorities.

"We emphasize that President Yudhoyono and former president Megawati are not involved in the case," said the statement.

However, the Australian Government obtained suppression orders to prevent publication of information that could suggest the involvement in corruption of specific senior political figures in the region, whether in fact they were or not.

"The Australian government considers that censorship is the best way to protect senior politicians in the region from baseless accusations. The graft case is an old and complicated case involving certain individuals in the region. The censorship that we had ordered along with the names mentioned in it does not mean that the politicians had done anything wrong," said the statement from Australian Embassy in Jakarta.

Furthermore, Australia also said it will conduct investigation regarding the leaked censorship order.

WikiLeaks on July 29 had released a report on "an unprecedented Australian censorship order concerning a multimillion dollar corruption case explicitly naming the current and past heads of state of Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam, their relatives, and other senior officials."

The super-injunction invokes "national security" grounds to prevent reporting about the case, by anyone, in order to "prevent damage to Australias international relations," the report said.

The court-issued gag order follows the secret June 19, 2014, indictment of seven senior executives from subsidiaries of Australias central bank, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA). The case concerns allegations of multimillion dollar inducements made by agents of the RBA subsidiaries Securency and Note Printing Australia in order to secure contracts for the supply of Australian-style polymer banknotes to the governments of Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and other countries.

The suppression order lists 17 individuals, including "any current or former Prime Minister of Malaysia"; "Truong Tan San, currently President of Vietnam"; "Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (also known as SBY), currently President of Indonesia (since 2004)"; "Megawati Sukarnoputri (also known as Mega), a former President of Indonesia (2001-2004); current leader of the PDI-P political party"; and 14 other senior officials and relatives from those countries, who specifically may not be named in connection with the corruption investigation, WikiLeaks said.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) had asked the Australian government to provide an explanation on the latest report released by WikiLeaks on Australian censorship order concerning a multimillion dollar corruption case.

"The news issued by WikiLeaks explicitly naming the current and past heads of state of several Asian countries, including Indonesia, is very hurting. I am also observing what actions Australia has been taking. The (Indonesian) foreign minister had apprised me after communicating with the Indonesian ambassador in Canberra and the Australian ambassador," President Yudhoyono said at a press conference held at his private residence here, Thursday.

Yudhoyono said an explanation was necessary because the report had mentioned that 17 senior officials from Asian countries had been reportedly protected by the Australian government through a special order saying that no investigation should be carried out as it could affect the relationship between Australia and those countries.

"Of those prominent figures, SBY and Megawati (former Indonesian president) were also mentioned by WikiLeaks report released on July 29, 2014, concerning the alleged multimillion dollar corruption case, explicitly naming the current and past heads of state," the president noted.

The Indonesian president said he had to provide clarification on the report and has collected more information from concerned authorities.

"Such kinds of news spread fast. As it is a sensitive news, and as it concerns my and Mrs Megawatis honor and dignity, I had decided to take action and issue this statement. Because I consider that news has denigrated and harmed Mrs Megawati and me. It has caused speculation and suspicion," he stated.

Yudhoyono added that if the Australian authorities conducted investigation on the WikiLeaks report, the investigation process should be open and transparent. If any Indonesian had been named in the corruption case, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) should be involved in the investigation, he stated.


Editor: Jafar M Sidik
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