Reception Hall, Istana Merdeka
September 9, 2016

Soon after their tête–à–tête, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte joined Indonesian President Joko Widodo and their official delegation for an expanded bilateral meeting at the Reception Hall of Istana Merdeka.

In an interview with Philippine Ambassador to the Republic of Indonesia Maria Lumen B. Isleta, she emphasized the importance of President Duterte’s visit to Indonesia, especially now that the cooperation between the two countries has been intensifying throughout the years. The bilateral relations between the Philippines and Indonesia was established on November 24, 1949 and this year mark its 67th anniversary.

“In these 67 years, there has not been any problem between our two countries… His forthcoming visit to Indonesia, one of our most important partners in ASEAN and also considered the big brother in ASEAN, it’s very significant for our bilateral relations, as well as for the regional grouping of ASEAN,” she said.

Meanwhile, one of the possible agenda of the said expanded bilateral meeting between President Duterte and President Widodo is a discussion on the resolution of security threats in areas concerning their respective countries, especially in the Sulu Sea in Southern Philippines.

In a gathering attended by members of the Filipino Community in Indonesia, President Duterte mentioned in his keynote address that he would talk to President Widodo about maritime security.

“I am here to get an agreement with him because there is so much piracy in the seas,” the President said earlier.

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