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Singapore Protests Accusations by Indonesian Police Officials on Extradition


APRIL 02, 2017

Jakarta. The Singaporean government has described accusations by Indonesian police officials that it refuses to honor an extradition treaty between the two countries as "factually incorrect and mischievous."

Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Sunday (02/04) that comments by Insp. Gen. Saiful Maltha, head of international relations at the Indonesian National Police, and Brig. Gen. Naufal Yahya, secretary of Interpol Indonesia's National Central Bureau "do not reflect the good cooperation between the two law enforcement agencies."

The Foreign Ministry issued the statement in response to Indonesian news reports that quoted Saiful as saying that Singapore refused to cooperate with the country on extradition treaty and mutual legal assistance requests.

Saiful was referring to the case involving Indonesian businessman Honggo Wendratno, a corruption and money-laundering suspect, who is believed to be hiding out in Singapore, as reported by state-run news agency Antara.

According to Saiful, Indonesia sent a draft of the treaty to Singapore but did not receive any reply. He accused the city-state of being uncomfortable with extraditions.

Furthermore, Naufal was also quoted as saying that Singapore is a country that tends to put its own interests first.

"Singapore lives on investment. If the suspect does not invest there, he would surely have been driven out on the pretext of overstaying," Naufal said.

The Singaporean Foreign Ministry said the two countries have signed the Extradition Treaty and Defense Cooperation Agreement as a package in April 2007, witnessed by former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

"Both agreements are still pending ratification by the Indonesian House of Representatives. Singapore is ready to proceed with both agreements once Indonesia is ready to do so," the statement said.

The Foreign Ministry added that Singapore has provided assistance to Indonesia on its mutual legal assistance requests, emphasizing "good bilateral cooperation in law enforcement and in dealing with criminal matters" between the two countries.