Ahmad Faiz Ibnu Sani, Jakarta – Timor Leste President Fransisco Guterres urged has called on Indonesia to support his country to become a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
He conveyed his wish to President Joko Widodo or Jokowi during Guterres' visit to the Bogor Presidential Palace on Thursday, June 28.
"I am grateful for Indonesia's continuous support to Timor Leste to become an ASEAN member," said Guterres today during a press conference with Jokowi in Bogor, West Java.
ASEAN was established on August 8, 1969, based on the Bangkok Declaration followed by five nations, namely Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. The member of ASEAN gradually increased to 10 countries as Brunei Darussalam joined in in 1984, Vietnam in 1995, Laos and Myanmar in 1997, as well as Cambodia in 1999.
Foreign Affairs Ministry's Southeast Asia director Denny Abdi said Indonesia has indeed supported Timor Leste to become an ASEAN member. However, there was an issue on the development rate in the country when compared to other ASEAN countries.
Given the condition, Denny added, Indonesia and Timor Leste will continue to strengthen bilateral ties. particularly in light of the connectivity between the two countries.