U.S. OKs Revived Ties to Indonesia Military
The State Department has recommended that U.S. military training resume in Indonesia after a break of more than a decade, as Washington seeks closer military ties with the world’s most populous Muslim nation.
In a weekend announcement, the department said Indonesia had met conditions set by Congress for reestablishing the training relationship.
“The department expects that Indonesia’s resumption of full international military education and training will strengthen its ongoing democratic progress and advance cooperation in other areas of mutual concern,” the statement said.
Formal military relations were cut with Indonesia in the early 1990s because of suspected human rights violations by Indonesian forces.
However, some counter-terrorism training was resumed after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the U.S.
The Bush administration has previously tried to revive ties with Indonesia’s military, but the effort faltered after two American schoolteachers were killed in the province of Papua in 2002.
Investigations by police and nongovernmental organizations pointed to Indonesian military involvement in the slayings.
Congress made any resumption of U.S. military training for Indonesian officers dependent on certification that Jakarta was helping the FBI investigate the killings.
The department said Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had determined that Indonesia’s government and armed forces were cooperating.