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Death of former Indonesian Foreign Minister Alatas

Hon Murray McCully

Minister of Foreign Affairs

 12 December 2008
Media Statement


Death of former Indonesian Foreign Minister Alatas 

Foreign Minister Murray McCully today expressed his condolences at the death of former Indonesian Foreign Minister Ali Alatas.

“On behalf of the people of New Zealand, I offer our sympathy to the Alatas family and to the people of Indonesia at the loss of one of South East Asia’s most eminent statesmen,” Mr McCully said.

“Over several decades, Ali Alatas was a good friend to New Zealand.

“Mr Alatas had a distinguished record of service to his country, having been Foreign Minister from 1988 to 1999. Of particular note was the role he played in building the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) into the major force for regional progress and stability that it is today.

“His influence also extended well beyond Indonesia and South East Asia, as he played a prominent role in the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Organisation of Islamic Conference.

“In recent years New Zealand worked with Mr Alatas in promoting the Alliance of Civilizations, which aimed to address the growing polarisation between cultures, and he gave a keynote address on this topic in Auckland last year.”

Mr Alatas, who was 76, was most recently a Foreign Policy Adviser to current Indonesian President Yudhoyono.


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