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No military pact in Asean

31st March 2011 | 1.816 Views
No military pact in Asean
Purnomo Yusgiantoro. (ANTARA)
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro has said there is no military pack in Asean, which is specifically related to armed cooperation for regional defense.

"Military pact is unknown to us. We have the cooperation so long it is not cohesive to the military defense," Purnomo said at the presidential palace complex here on Thursday.

The defense minister made the statement in relation with an informal meeting of Asean army chiefs at Merdeka Palace on Thursday.

Purnomo said the informal meeting of Asean top military officials was to eliminate the opinion that Asean would move toward a community, equipped with a military pact.

"It is an informal meeting to prevent a perception it was a formal one like defense ministerial meeting in Europe in relation with North Atlantic Treaty Organization," Purnomo said.

He said Indonesia strongly refused to join in certain defense pact because it was the country`s attitude based on the 1945 Constitution which states that Indonesia applies free and active foreign policy.

But he said Indonesia remained having non-war military cooperation with a number of countries including in Asean.

A number of ASEAN army chiefs attended the informal meeting at the Merdeka Palace here on Thursday.

But Purnomo Yusgiantoro said that nothing had been discussed with regard to armed operations at the meeting.

"They discussed nothing associated with armed operations because it is an informal meeting," Purnomo said before attending the gathering.

He said the informal meeting may clarify Indonesia`s commitment to not forming a military pact in the Asean region, because according to him, military cooperation was not only in the form of war.

"The cooperation may be in military operations but other than war," Purnomo said.

He added that the military operation other than in war could be among other things in disaster handling, peace missions, terror management, and maritime territorial security.