REPUBLIKA.CO.ID – Indonesia's newly elected president this year should work towards improving the future relations between the two neighboring countries, former prime minister of Malaysia Mahathir Muhammad optimistically stated on Monday, 14/4/14.
“Indonesia and Malaysia have so far enjoyed sound relations, but trivial problems still often arise between the two countries. I hope that the newly elected president can help to maintain good relations and settle the existing problems,” he remarked during a visit here.
He did not get into the finer details of what he meant by “trivial problems,” but emphasized the importance of sound relations between Indonesia and Malaysia, not only for the two countries, but also for maintaining stability in the Southeast Asian region.
“Good relations between the two neighboring countries will not only benefit Indonesia and Malaysia, but will also be very important for Southeast Asia,” he claimed.
“I am amazed by the implementation of the general elections in Indonesia, which has gone without any bloodshed. It is not easy to hold a general election in a country with a population reaching more than 200 million,” he remarked.
Malaysia and Indonesia were almost involved in a military clash at the end of the rule of former president Soekarno, who considered the Kuala Lumpur government as a British puppet. The relations between the two countries were yet again strained in the early millennium due to a dispute over the ownership of Sipadan and Ligitan islands in the Strait of Makassar.
Mon, 14 April 2014