Indonesia Looks to Flex Muscles Globally

Indonesia Looks to Flex Muscles Globally

The Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa's trip to London for talks on Afghanistan and the increasing activity of Indonesian state-backed construction companies in the Middle East both reflect the new policy of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono that Indonesia must go global and take a lead in the Muslim world.

The Indonesian delegation in London held bilateral meetings with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. President Barack Obama and the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown are pushing for Indonesia to play a bigger role in Afghanistan and on the global stage. For the US and UK, it is painfully obvious that negotiations with the Taliban and the need for soft-power solutions in Afghanistan, backed by hard power, are the order of the day.

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