REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, BEIJING -- Indonesia has sought the Chinese government's support for the Palestinian people in their struggle to gain independence. The issue of Palestine was raised by Indonesia during the third meeting of the RI-China Joint Commission of Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) held in Beijing on February 8-9, 2018, particularly after the US cut its financial aid to the UNRWA.
"We have urged China to offer support to the struggle of the Palestinian people, including support for the refugees through the UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East)," Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi noted in a joint press statement with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Beijing on Friday evening.
In addition to the Palestine issue, both Marsudi and Yi also discussed regional architecture. "Primarily for Indonesia, every discussion on regional architecture must meet the principles of openness, transparency, inclusiveness, mutual support, dialog, and building trust by prioritizing the spirit of cooperation and international legal content," Marsudi explained.
The minister believed that the China-ASEAN cooperation will continue to be improved with the start of negotiations on the Code of Conduct in South China Sea, in Vietnam on March 1-2, 2018.
With hopes of the negotiation process being completed immediately, Marsudi asserted that China and the ASEAN must contribute to peace and welfare in the region in line with international law.
Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Minister Yi expressed gratitude for the mutual commitment of both countries. "We are building a five-year momentum for the China-Indonesia strategic partnership relationship to improve ties in future," he said.
He also highlighted the historical aspect of strategic partnership between China and Indonesia through the Asian-African Conference in Bandung, West Java. "In the history of the conference, China and Indonesia are both responsible for building 10 mutually respectful and beneficial bases in terms of state relations," Yi added.
Prior to holding a bilateral meeting under the JCBC framework, Minister Marsudi paid a visit to Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang at work in Zhong Nan Hai, on Friday. During the meeting, Prime Minister Keqiang was accompanied by Foreign Minister Yi and Chinese Ambassador to Indonesia Xiao Qian as well as several other officials.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Marsudi was accompanied by the Ministry's Director General for Asia-Pacific and African Affairs Desra Percaya, Charge d'Affaires Ad-Interim of the Indonesian Embassy Listyowati, and several other officials.