UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab is received by Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi at the latter's office in Central Jakarta on April 7, 2021. (Photo Courtesy of the Foreign Affairs Ministry)

UK to Deploy Carrier to Indo-Pacific Region

BY :THE JAKARTA GLOBE

APRIL 07, 2021

Jakarta. The UK Royal Navy will deploy a group of battle ships and aircraft carrier to Indo-Pacific region, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said during his visit to Jakarta on Wednesday.

The announcement came amid escalating tension in the region marked by overlapping territorial claims and increasing China’s military presence in the South China Sea.

“We are preparing for the UK’s Carrier Strike Group visit here to the region later this year,” Raab said in a joint press conference with his Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi.

The Carrier Strike Group will be led by the HMS Queen Elizabeth in its maiden visit to the region.

While Indonesia is not in the center of the regional disputes, Raab said Southeast Asia’s biggest nation is one of UK’s key partners in global security cooperation.

“Both UK and Indonesia are in different parts of the world – but we are both maritime powers with strong maritime interests and even more importantly, a strong interest in making sure that the rules based system, the pillars, the tenets of this are reflected in UNCLOS [United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Sea] are upheld – because they are an important pillar of regional, and I would say also global stability,” Raab said.

He didn’t mention China during the news conference.

During his first visit to Indonesia as foreign secretary, Raab also briefed Retno about UK’s new approach in global security and cooperation, the so-called Integrated Review published on March 16.

“It is probably the most comprehensive articulation of British foreign policy for a generation. It sets out our vision for Britain in the world – and places the Indo-Pacific at the heart of it, and Indonesia at the heart of that vision,” Raab said.

“I think it just goes to show, not just on the specific material issues we are discussing, but also actually our strategic view of the world – how important Indonesia is.”

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