External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj arrived in Jakarta early on Wednesday morning starting her her five-day visit to Indonesia. She will be attending the 60th commemoration of the historical 1955 Asian-African Conference in the south-east Asian neighbouring nation.
She will also attend the 10th anniversary celebrations of the New Asian-African Strategic Partnership. The External Affairs Minister is accompanied by senior diplomats from the ministry for the conference where important discussions will take place in Jakarta and Bandung.
Three important declarations are expected at the conference which became the stepping stone for the Non-Aligned Movement during the Cold War-era. Strengthening South-South Cooperation to promote world peace and prosperity, declaration on reinvigorating the new Asian African Strategic Partnership and declaration on Palestine is likely to be declared in Bandung message 2015.
The 1955 conference led by Indonesia’s independence hero Sukarno galvanised global stalwarts like Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, whose famous ‘Panchsheel’ doctrine was incorporated in 10 principles of international peace and cooperation in declaration.
Ms. Swaraj will also be part of historical walk in Bandung to mark the moment 60 years ago when leaders of 29 Asian and African countries walked together and joined hands in the First Asian African Conference.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi could not attend the conference because of on-going Budget Session of the Parliament. He had written to the Indonesian President Joko Widodo expressing his inability to attend the commemoration which is expected to see participation of Heads of States from major Asian and African powers like China, Japan, South Africa among others.
Asserting that he attaches extraordinary importance to bilateral relations with Indonesia, PM Modi had said there was much in “our proximity, history, culture and now, the sheer democratic values and our roles as two major emerging Asian nations that impart great strategic importance to our partnership”.
Noting that in these 60 years, Asia has seen unprecedented economic progress, rise of democracy and elimination of poverty, PM Narendra Modi said, “Yet it must still deal with unresolved questions and unsettled issues for enduring peace and prosperity in the region