Manila Bulletin

In­done­sia seeks guide­lines on cross-bor­der anti-piracy drive

- By YAS D. OCAMPO

DAVAO CITY – The Con­sulate of In­done­sia here said it was seek­ing a “tech­ni­cal” doc­u­ment from the Philip­pine gov­ern­ment that would out­line the rules of en­gage­ment that would al­low for­eign en­force­ment ves­sels to en­ter Philip­pine shores in pur­suit of in­ter­na­tional pi­rates.

Speak­ing to re­porters in Abreeza Ayala Mall Wed­nes­day, In­done­sian Con­sul Gen­eral Ber­lian Naitupulu said the In­done­sian gov­ern­ment al­ready has its navy at-the-ready to re­spond to re­ports of piracy in in­ter­na­tional waters, but could not ef­fec­tively op­er­ate in the area as the im­ple­ment­ing guide­lines for such an op­er­a­tion have yet to be is­sued by the Philip­pines.

Naitupulu said that piracy re­mains as among the big­gest chal­lenges to his coun­try’s mar­itime ac­tiv­i­ties, es­pe­cially with the Philip­pines which is one of the big­gest im­porter of coal com­ing from In­done­sia.

Late last year, the In­done­sian gov­ern­ment limited mar­itime travel to the Philip­pines for its ves­sels car­ry­ing prod­ucts such as coal due to the threat of piracy.

In De­cem­ber, the two gov­ern­ments, along with the gov­ern­ment of Malaysia, en­tered into an ini­tial agree­ment on strength­ened co­op­er­a­tion in the in­ter­na­tional waters along its bound­aries.

But this agree­ment was only for the shar­ing of in­for­ma­tion, with op­er­a­tions such as pur­suit of pi­rate ves­sels not yet fi­nal­ized.

Naitupulu said that the In­done­sian gov­ern­ment was reg­u­larly deal­ing with piracy not only from its shores, but also in the shores of Malaysia and the Philip­pines.

At the mo­ment, the In­done­sian con­sulate has al­ready sent out at least four task forces here to carry out the nec­es­sary diplo­matic meets with rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Philip­pines in meet­ings here.

In a pre­vi­ous en­gage­ment, Pres­i­dent Duterte said ships from other coun­tries may help out in pa­trolling in­ter­na­tional waters, es­pe­cially if the in­ci­dents con­cerned piracy.

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