President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono held on Monday a plenary Cabinet meeting to discuss Indonesia-Malaysia ties following a recent incident in Tenjung Berakit waters in Riau, which has sparked an anti-Malaysia drive.
Yudhoyono said talks on border issues between Indonesia and Malaysia were pressing to solve territorial disputes facing the two neighbors.
The President called for proportional diplomatic measures in dealing with any dispute, but underlined that Indonesia would defend its territorial integrity at all cost.
“This is an era of cooperation, not war. Nevertheless if it concerns our territory and sovereignty we will do whatever we can [to defend national integrity],” Yudhoyono said as quoted by Antara news agency.
Malaysia has released three fishery and maritime patrol officers suspected of trespassing Malaysian territory, while Indonesia set free seven Malaysian fishermen accused of poaching in Indonesian waters. The deal, however, has failed to appease the public and politicians alike, who regretted the compromise.
The Cabinet meeting also discussed efforts to maintain food security in the wake of global natural disasters, which occurred in, among other countries, China, Pakistan and Nigeria.