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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
09JAKARTA435 2009-03-12 10:39:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Jakarta
Cable title:  

INDONESIA-SINGAPORE SIGN BOUNDARY PACT

Tags:   PREL PBTS EWWT ID SN 
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O 121039Z MAR 09
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1816
INFO ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE
NSC WASHDC
USPACOM HONOLULU HI
SECDEF WASHDC
					C O N F I D E N T I A L JAKARTA 000435 


DEPT FOR EAP, EAP/MTS, EAP/MLS, EAP/RSP
NSC FOR E.PHU

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/12/2019
TAGS: PREL PBTS EWWT ID SN
SUBJECT: INDONESIA-SINGAPORE SIGN BOUNDARY PACT

Classified By: Pol/C Joseph L. Novak, reasons 1.4(b+d).



1. (C) SUMMARY: Indonesia and Singapore have signed a
long-awaited agreement delineating their common maritime
border in a section of the Singapore Strait. The agreement
promises to improve control of sea and air navigation in the
Strait and aid national law enforcement efforts as well. The
ratification process on the Indonesian side is a question,
given the Indonesian legislature's prickly response on
territorial sovereignty issues in the past. The legislature
continues to refuse to ratify a defense cooperation agreement
with Singapore that would give Singapore's military training
rights in Indonesia. END SUMMARY.

GOI-GOS BOUNDARY AGREEMENT



2. (U) The agreement covers the eastern part of the Strait,
a section that is only 12.1 kilometers long, but the talks
took five years and eight rounds of negotiation to complete.
The boundary was determined on the basis of the United
Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) of 1982, to
which both countries are parties. Signed by Indonesian FM
Wirajuda and Singaporean FM Yeo in Jakarta on March 10, the
agreement provides a legal certainty that will aid navigation
and enhance respective law enforcement efforts at sea and in
the air, according to commentators.



3. (U) The agreement also represents a step forward in an
area of considerable sensitivity. Indonesia has in the past
objected to Singapore's commercial mining of sand from small
islands and waters in Indonesian territory. In addition, a
bilateral Defense Cooperation Agreement (DCA) concluded in
2007 has yet to receive ratification by the Indonesian
legislature (DPR) over sovereignty concerns. DPR legislators
objected to provisions allowing the Singapore Armed Forces to
train and conduct extensive military exercises in Indonesian
territory, including with third parties.

THE PATH TOWARD RATIFICATION



4. (C) Indonesian officials and legislators are optimistic
about DPR ratification. They note that Indonesian President
Yudhoyono and Singaporean Prime Minister Goh welcomed the
agreement at the recent ASEAN Summit in Thailand. Indonesian
Armed Forces (TNI) Chief General Santoso said the agreement
facilitated smoother coordination of air and maritime control
in the Strait. Djoko Susilo, a member of DPR's Commission I
on foreign and defense affairs, told Pol/C that the agreement
was fair and respected Indonesian sovereignty. He noted that
DEPLU had already briefed the DPR on the matter. He
therefore did not expect that there would be much difficulty
in the DPR ratification process.



5. (C) Officials at the Directorate of Treaties and Legal
Affairs in the Department of Foreign Affairs (DEPLU)
refrained from comment regarding the chances of ratification,
but told poloff that DEPLU intended to seek ratification as
soon as possible because of the agreement's benefits for
Strait management and safety. It was unclear whether that
could be done during the final months of the current DPR
session, given upcoming legislative and presidential
elections, or would have to await the new session that would
begin in the fall.

DELINKING FROM DCA



6. (C) Officials at the Singaporean Embassy in Jakarta noted
that the agreement was part of an effort that would take some
time. A 1973 agreement already regulated the central part of
the Strait. Following ratification of this new agreement for
the western section, negotiations would begin on the more
difficult eastern portion of the Strait, which also involved
a border with Malaysia.



7. (C) Singaporean Embassy officials said they believed the
Indonesian legislature (DPR) would ratify the agreement. The
noted the negotiations had been conducted separately from the
DCA and both countries benefited from the border demarcation.

HEFFERN