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Philippines, Indonesia discuss border activities
Publication Date : 26-06-2014
Strengthening their peaceful relations, the Philippines and Indonesia discussed border activities of the two nations Wednesday in Davao City.
Captain Alberto Caber, Eastern Mindanao Command of the Philippines, said the 33rd Philippines-Indonesia Vice Chairmen’s Conference was for peaceful resolutions for any tension that might arise in the borders.
“The conference is another opportunity to further strengthen mutual commitment for a peaceful resolution of issues arising at the border of the two neighboring countries,” Caber said.
He also downplayed any issues that the meeting touched topics about the territorial disputes in the South China Sea, saying the conference was purely between the Philippines and Indonesia.
On May 23, Philippine President Aquino and Indonesian President Susilo Yudhoyono presided over the signing of a maritime border accord between the two countries.
Lieutenant General Ricardo Rainier Cruz III, Commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command and Chairman of the Philippine Border Committee, led the Philippine side of the conference with Laksma (Commodore) Raja Morni Harahap leading the Indonesian party.
During the conference the two officials agreed on the following: a joint Philippine-Indonesian search and rescue operations on the border seas; information sharing between the Philippine Navy Naval Operations Center and Indonesian Navy Command Control Center and between the Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao Operations Center and the Eastern Fleet Command of the Indonesian Navy; the expansion of activities between the two nations during humanitarian and disaster response; review the standard operating procedure on mandatory equipment onboard vessels crossing the border seas; advising its citizens who cross the borders to pass through designated stations, increase their presence in the borders to prevent illegal passage, and the use of aircraft during border patrol.
“Accordingly, there were border crossers engaged in trading and entering the Philippines and Indonesia territory without passing through the specified border crossing stations,” Caber said.
“The Philippines and Indonesia is working as a team to come up with a mutually beneficial solution to every issue arising from borders,” Cruz said. “What we have in common is the willingness to improve relations in order to protect our mutual interest.”