As the largest forum for inter-state cooperation in the Indian Ocean, the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) pays tremendous importance on efforts to tackle non-traditional security threats, including terrorism. While IORA’s membership is made up of countries with varying security conditions and economic development between countries, terrorism has become a threat commonly shared by all every member country.
For this reason, during the first ever IORA Leaders’ Summit in Jakarta, March 2017, member countries pledged our commitment to the cause through the Declaration on Preventing and Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism. In stepping up our efforts to combat terrorism and extremism, we look to promote messages of respect, tolerance, co-existence, inclusion, diversity and social cohesion. The Declaration also highlighted the importance of working with the United Nations and other international and regional institutions to prevent and counter such scourge to humanity.
As an active IORA member and Chair of the Association in 2016-2017, Indonesia has worked hand-in-hand with other member states to promote cooperation in this field. The Jakarta Centre for Law Enforcement Cooperation (JCLEC), in Semarang, Central Java has hosted training and workshops related to security and anti-terrorism. In August 2017, the Centre organized a Maritime Safety and Security Program, which was attended by top law enforcement officials. The program highlighted various aspects of maritime security, including maritime terrorism, arms smuggling, piracy and armed robbery at sea, as well as the legal framework for addressing these security concerns.
Indeed, considering the geographical characteristics of the Association’s interactions, maritime safety and security has become one of IORA’s priority areas. The aim is not only to enhance the safety and freedom of navigation in the Indian Ocean, but also to address the transboundary challenges that could threaten the potential of this massive body of water in promoting the economic development of each and one its coastal states.
As part of efforts in promoting a peaceful, stable, prosperous, and inclusive Indian Ocean environment, Indonesia will continue its active engagement in anti-terrorism efforts under the framework of IORA cooperation. Should Indonesia be elected as non permanent member of the UN Security Council, our efforts in this field will be part of our contribution as a true partner for world peace.
Source: Directorate of Inter and Intra Regional Cooperation for Asia Pacific and Africa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia