Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said that political solutions were the only way to end crises in the Middle East and achieve sustainable peace.
“Indonesia has learned that a peaceful solution can only be achieved through promoting inclusivity and a constructive link,” she told Asharq Al-Awsat in an interview. “To do so, it is imperative that we distance ourselves from any acts of self-interest that would impede progress.”
“It is important for the international community to continue to support the peace talks,” she said, commenting on the crisis in Yemen and Syria.
On a different note, Marsudi underlined the need to immediately stop the escalation of the conflict in the South China Sea.
“Regarding our relations with the United States and the current conflict in the South China Sea, I would like to reiterate and confirm our position that Indonesia is not a party to the conflict. We will always support and respect the principles of international law, in particular the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea,” Marsudi said.
She noted that Indonesia was urging all parties to push for dialogue and the peaceful settlement of disputes.
“Therefore, we insist on stopping the escalation of the conflict immediately, as we must give priority to our cooperation to combat the epidemic and restore our economy,” she said.
Marsudi continued: “I look forward to working with all parties to maintain peace and stability in the region, as I have conveyed our message to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on many occasions, both of whom understand and respect Indonesia's stance.”
Jakarta sent three messages to the G20, underlining the need to strengthen cooperation among member-states in order to provide fair and affordable vaccines, support the recovery of international trade and investment, and empower the World Health Organization, to support developing countries in facing the coronavirus pandemic.
“As a forum that represents most of the global economy, it is time for the G20 to show unity and solidarity through a coordinated global response to economic recovery,” she stated.
Asked about the role of Saudi Arabia in the success of the activities and meetings of the G20 countries amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Marsudi said: “The Saudi Presidency of the G20 comes in an exceptional year, with the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and the global economic crisis. Amid these challenges, we are also witnessing the lack of an enabling environment, including rivalry between major powers, a deteriorating spirit of cooperation, and a decline in collective global leadership. It can only be resolved if we put differences aside and increase global cooperation. Therefore, we commend the Saudi leadership of the G20 and its efforts in ensuring the success of the G20 meetings during the crisis.”
As for the relations between Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, the foreign minister said that the Kingdom was one of her country’s important partners.
“As we celebrate the 73rd anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, we are confident that we can enhance close cooperation between the two countries, as our close relationship transcends the bilateral context, through cooperation at the regional and multilateral level at the Gulf Cooperation Council, the League of Arab States, the United Nations, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, the Non-Aligned Movement and the Group of 77,” Marsudi told Asharq Al-Awsat.
She stressed that both Saudi Arabia and Indonesia shared the same commitment to fight terrorism, promote the image of peaceful Islam and true tolerance.
“The two countries are working closely to enhance their cooperation in the field of combating terrorism, and this close collaboration will become a criterion for greater work between the two countries in the region and in the international forum,” she stated, adding: “It is imperative that both Saudi Arabia and Indonesia become part of the solution and not part of the problem in eradicating terrorism and maintaining world peace.”