Thursday, June 11, 2009

Indonesia and Malaysian Navies in confrontation

Malaysian Indonesian Confrontation in Ambalat Area

The Indonesian media's reporting on Malaysian incursions into Indonesian territory in the Ambalat Block has drawn Malaysian comments that tried to play down the incidents.

The Malaysian military accused the Indonesian military of escalating the events in Ambalat waters where Malaysian warships were recently caught trespassing Indonesian territory.

Indonesia has so far already sent 36 protest notes to Malaysia about border violations committed by Malaysian patrol boats in Ambalat waters.By sending the protest notes, Indonesia is attempting to make it plain that Ambalat was an area subject to Indonesian sovereignty.

The first protest note was delivered to Malaysian government in 1980.

But beside sending the protest notes, the Indonesian government was continuing to use diplomatic channels to arrive at a settlement of the Ambalat issue through negotiations.

Indonesia had decided not to make any military advances toward Malaysia despite the neighboring country`s frequent incursions into Indonesian territory in oil-rich Ambalat waters in East Kalimantan.

The Indonesian navy has indicated that it will continue to guard the Ambalat area with six warships and three military aircraft.

Malaysia has trespassed the Ambalat area 76 times in 2007, 23 times in 2008 and 11 times in 2009 as of Wednesday.

International borders in the area have yet to be determined with each country claiming the area as its own.

Malaysia claims the area based on a 1979 maritime map while Indonesia bases its claim on provisions in the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Seas (UNCLOS).

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