Cabinet Secretary: We Respect the Philippine Government
Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung said that both President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo and Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi continue monitoring the development of 10 Indonesian nationals being held hostage by a separatist group in the Philippines.
According to Pramono, the Government is ready to send personnel of the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI) and the Indonesian National Police (Polri) to free them if the PhilippineGovernment cannot handle the case.
“We’re making approaches (to find the solution to the problem) but we also respect the Philippine Government and hope that they can immediately follow up this case and free the Indonesians. Above all, we respect the Philippine constitution,” Pramono said to reporters at the State Palace on Friday (8/4).
Pramono went on to say that both Chief of the Indonesian National Police (Kapolri) and the Commander of the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI) have reported to President Jokowi about their readiness to free those Indonesian nationals.
However, Pramono noted that the Indonesian Government prioritizes ‘human and brotherhood’ measures as well assoft diplomacy.
Pramono further said that based on the satellite monitoring, the Government has actually monitored the of Indonesian ships or the crews.
“Frankly, we know in details where they are. We have the equipment (to detect their positions) but we respect the Philippine Government and we hope those Indonesian nationals can be freed soon,” Pramono added.
Asked about the deadline to pay the ransom demanded by the group, Pramono said that the Indonesian Government has no idea about that because the group has not told the Indonesian Government (about the deadline) and the Government is still waiting for the information from the PhilippineGovernment about the negotiation of the ransom.
“Once again, we respect the Philippine Government, ” Pramono concluded. (FID/JAY/ES) (Naster/YM/EP)