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Indonesia, Australia military co-operation on hold for 'technical reasons'

Indonesia, Australia military co-operation on hold for 'technical reasons'

As reported by Stuff.nz on January 4, 2017, a source revealed that the Australian military traning materials with offensive contents towards Indonesia's past military records in 1965, or during the time of the East Timor invasion.

There appears to be some confusion as to how serious the blow up is after Indonesia's Defence Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu played down the suspension and said he would visit Australia soon.

The Indonesian Special Forces train regularly with the Australian Special Air Service Regiment, based at Campbell Barracks in Perth.

The Indonesian Army was miffed with their Australian counterparts after finding training material at the latter's base, local media reports said. He said a broad range of activities would be affected.

"The Indonesian military is still very sensitive about the (intervention)", he said.

An Indonesian newspaper, Kompas, reported that a Kopassus instructor had found "laminated material" at the training facility which he considered to be offensive to the Indonesia's founding principle of Pancasila.

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The material was insulting to the Indonesian state ideology of Pancasila, which is symbolised by a Javan hawk-eagle.

With ties gradually warming again, the first joint training exercise on Australian soil since 1995 was staged in the northern city of Darwin in September past year.

Kompas quoted the director of the Institute for Defence, Security and Peace Studies in Indonesia, Mufti Makarim, saying it was wrong of the Australian military to enter into Indonesian politics. Indonesia and Australia had cooperated on fighting terrorism ever since bombings on the Indonesian resort island of Bali in 2002 killed 202 people, including 88 Australians.

In addition to the 2013 allegations of Australian spying, ties were also strained in 2015 following Indonesia's executions of Australian drug smugglers Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, and its criticism of Australia's border protection policy.

'The investigation requires an examination of materials, interviews with the Australians involved and an opportunity for the Indonesian officer to comment, these things need to done appropriately and fairly which takes time, ' the minister said.

In September a year ago, the first joint training exercise on Australian soil since 1995 was staged in the northern city of Darwin.


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