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Thursday, June 05, 2014

Prime Minister's travels: missed opportunity No 1


Prime Minister Abbott Joint Press Statements 4 June:
I want to congratulate Bapak President Yudhoyono for the leadership that he has shown - not just here in Indonesia, but in this region and in the wider world over the past decade. President Yudhoyono has been one of the senior statesmen – perhaps the senior statesman – of ASEAN and has helped to make ASEAN strong and more influential in the councils of the world. I want to stress that a strong ASEAN is important to our region; it’s very important to Australia...Finally, may I say that when President Yudhoyono leaves office, Indonesia will have lost a statesman and Australia will have lost a friend....President Yudhoyono has been a great President and a good friend to Australia. I believe that when the history of Indonesia is written, the Yudhoyono presidency will be a watershed - marked by peace abroad, prosperity at home, the consolidation of democracy and the strengthening of national unity.

The missed opportunity (my words):
A sign of your commitment to democracy and your standing as a leader is evident in the key role Indonesia as the current lead co chair has played in the Open Government Partnership   The OGP now includes 63 countries committed to open, transparent and accountable government and to increased citizen participation. I very much regret that I was unable to join you in Bali recently for the first Asia Pacific Regional Conference. As you said on that occasion, other countries in the region should stand with Indonesia in promoting the OGP particularly in this dynamic region. I am pleased to announce today that Australia will proceed forthwith to join you and other partnership members in this important work.
So, onto France.

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