Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi expressed her pride stating that the Asian Games 2018 that was run in Jakarta and Palembang was not just a sporting event, but a momentum to bond friendship and world peace.
“There was a feeling of pride that as host of the Asian Games 2018, Indonesia has been appreciated not just in Asia, but also the world. This is because Asian Games is not just a sporting competition but also one that binds the friendship between North Korea and South Korea,” said Minister Retno in a keynote speech in the 10th Pancasila Congress that is organised at UGM Senate Hall on Thursday (23/8).
She said that North Korea and South Korea have set up a joint team for the Asian Games. At least 50 athletes have been sent to compete in three sports, namely canoe, basket ball, and rowing.
Prime Minister of South Korea, she said, appreciated Indonesia that has consistently encouraged peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula. One of those is through the Asian Games where both attend as one team and contribute to the confidence building measures between North Korea and South Korea.
“South Korea and North Korea agreed to use one flag when parading during the opening of the Asian Games,” she added.
The Asian Games 2018 also gave the platform for unity in Palestine. Minister Retno said when receiving the courtesy call by the chairman of Palestinian Olympics Committee, President Joko Widodo said the Asian Games would provide a new energy to the Palestinian unity which is seen in the contingent from the West Bank, Gaza, Palestinian diaspora. Palestine so far sent over 80 athletes for 14 sports at the Asian Games 2018.
“President Joko Widodo expected that the spirit of Asian Games could be made a new energy for the struggle of the Palestinian state,” he said.
Minister Retno further said that Indonesia had diplomacy track record which consistently contributes to peace, stability, and welfare, in line with the paragraph 4 of the opening of the State Constitution.
The effort to contribute to world peace and welfare is also one of the elements in the country’s foreign policy. As part of the global community, Indonesia cannot remain silent and thinks of its own interest.
“It’s not possible for Indonesia to think only of our interests and refrain from making contribution to world peace and welfare. The honour of a country is determined by that country to share and contribute to the world,” she said.