Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto said on Thursday that the authorities are examining the issue of the “standard map” released by China last month to claim sovereignty over the disputed South China Sea, the Indian territories in Arunachal Pradesh and the Aksai Chin region, along with Taiwan. Speaking to news agency ANI, Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto said, “I think there are authorities looking into the situation” as the country hosts the 20th ASEAN-India Summit and the 18th East Asia Summit.
On Thursday morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Jakarta to attend the summits.
Ahead of the summits, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that issues of “common interest” would be discussed, in an apparent reference to the possibilities of discussion over the “standard map” of China.
#He watches | Jakarta, Indonesia | In the 2023 edition of the “Standard Map” of China, Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto says, “I think there are authorities looking into the situation.” pic.twitter.com/WiQJImJwGY
– Annie (@Annie) September 7, 2023
“It is difficult to anticipate what will be discussed when the leaders meet, but issues of common interest – regional and international will come up once the discussion takes place… Whether there is a consensus or not, I cannot anticipate what might happen,” said Saurabh Kumar, (East) Secretary. Ministry of Foreign Affairs during a press conference: “We want to get out of the discussions. We can’t reveal any specific term.”
After the release of the map by Beijing, India lodged a strong protest with China and asserted that such steps only complicate the resolution of the boundary issue.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also dismissed China’s allegations as “unfounded”.
Also read: “History, geography and a shared belief in peace unite us”: PM Modi at the ASEAN-India Summit in Jakarta
The Philippine government has also criticized China’s 2023 edition of the “standard map” which still shows swathes of Philippine landmarks in the West Philippine Sea.
On August 28, China’s Ministry of Natural Resources released a controversial map that includes the nine-point line, now the 10-point line, which is supposed to show China’s borders in the South China Sea.
Malaysia said it would send a protest note to China over the latter’s claims in the South China Sea, while Vietnam also criticized China’s latest provocation.
(Tags for translation)ASEAN Summit