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Meeting of EU Troika with Indonesian Foreign Minister Wirajuda in Vienna, 27.3.2006

Minister Treffen
April 12, 2006

On 27.3.2006 a meeting between Indonesian Foreign Minister Noer Hassan Wirajuda, Austrian Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik and the Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, Paula Lehtomäki, took place in Vienna.
Relations between the EU and Indonesia were the theme of the discussions. According to FM Plassnik relations between the EU and Indonesia have gained visibly in depth and momentum over the last few years. Indonesia is not only a successful young democracy, but it also has an influential political voice in Asia and is a determining factor in the regional integration process and in the Islamic world. The democratic reforms in Indonesia are explicitly welcomed and supported by the EU. Indonesia is a welcome newcomer to the democratic world.
The EU is currently negotiating a partnership and cooperation agreement with Indonesia. "We hope there will be a concrete outcome to the negotiations during our Presidency", Plassnik said.
She stressed that Indonesia is the EU’s chief partner in combating terrorism in the region. "As the country with the world’s largest Muslim population, Indonesia also has an important role in the dialogue of religions and cultures. For this reason too, we want to step up our relations. We share the view that practical measures are needed and that the media must also be more closely involved in the dialogue", the Foreign Minister said. A key element of political cooperation according to Plassnik is the peace process in Aceh: "The progress in the peace process is very encouraging, although big challenges still lie ahead. The EU hopes that the autonomy act for Aceh can be adopted in time to allow the elections foreseen in the peace agreement to proceed without delay. The EU currently has 85 observers serving with the international mission. That is an excellent example of Euro-Asian cooperation in the field of civil conflict management." 
The progress in reconstruction following the tsunami in December 2004 was also a theme of the talks. "The tsunami showed us how close we are to one another and that neighbourhood is not just an expression of geographical proximity. We shall continue to support the reconstruction process. For us it is a natural act of solidarity", Plassnik stressed.