Indonesia Refuses Negotiation with China Regarding Natuna

Deputy Foreign Minister Mahendra Siregar (photo: Sajadi/MINA)

Jakarta, MINA – Indonesia has confirmed its position is clear and recognized international law related to Natuna waters in the Riau Island, so there is no need to negotiate again with China regarding the chaos.

It was said by Deputy Foreign Minister Mahendra Siregar after a joint meeting with the House of Representatives Commission I, Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto, Indonesian National Army (TNI) Commander Hadi Tjahjanto, and the Head of Bakamla RI related to the Natuna issue.

“There is no negotiation. Our position is clear and recognized by international law, UNCLOS 1982. There is no need to negotiate (with China) about Indonesia’s EEZ region,” Mahendra said on Monday at the Indonesian Parliament Building, Jakarta, as quoted from CNNIndonesia.

Natuna is still in the spotlight, especially after dozens of Chinese ships escorted by coast guards broke and took fish in Indonesia’s EEZ region around Natuna since last December.

Although the Indonesian military and Bakamla RI have evicted, the Chinese fishing vessels reportedly had re-entered the Indonesian EEZ territory in Natuna. Although Indonesia has issued a memorandum of protest, China insists it has historical rights in the waters it considers to be in the South China Sea region.

Mahendra asserted that Indonesia would not accept if foreign vessels, including Chinese ships, still broke and took fish in Indonesia’s EEZ territory, especially around Natuna.

“The bitterness needs to be seen from the Chinese side, from our side, we do not accept it,” Mahendra said.

Meanwhile, Prabowo is determined to increase Indonesia’s defense and moderate national defense equipment to drive other countries that violate and enter Indonesian territory.

According to Prabowo, the country’s sovereignty is not negotiable, so special efforts are needed to safeguard it with one of them through defense equipment investment.

“Increasing defense, of course, yes we need to modernize Alutsista, we improve what we have so that we have the ability. We uphold our sovereignty,” Prabowo said. (T/Sj)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)