Washington DC [USA], August 3 (Sputnik/ANI): US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo discussed with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi bilateral defence ties between and regional tensions over China's claim that it owns most of the South China Sea, the State Department said in a readout of the conversation on Monday.
"The strong US-Indonesia Strategic Partnership and the two countries' shared goal of respect for international law in the South China Sea," was emphasized in the discussion, the readout said.
Pompeo and Marsudi also highlighted the importance of increased public health and economic cooperation to rebuild the economies of the United States and Indonesia as well as keep the region safe, the readout said.
Indonesia is not a claimant in the South China Sea dispute, which involves China, Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Vietnam, but has nevertheless rejected China's claims in a recent statement.
Pompeo specifically mentioned the Indonesian island Natuna as being outside of China's jurisdiction, the readout said.
Natuna's exclusive economic zone overlaps with the "nine-dash line" map that marks China's claim to the disputed waterway.
In late July, Indonesia's navy conducted a four-day exercise in the South China Sea with 24 warships, including two missile destroyers, four escort vessels plus unspecified land-based training, according to media reports. (Sputnik/ANI)