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UPDATED: February 19, 2009
Indonesian FM, U.S. Secretary of State Begin Talks
The two ministers will focus their discussion on bilateral issues

Indonesian Foreign Minister Nur Hassan Wirajuda and visiting Secretary of State of the United States Hillary Rodham Clinton began their official talks here Wednesday.

According to officials of Indonesian Foreign Ministry, the two ministers will focus their discussion on bilateral issues. They will also discuss regional and international issues of common concern such as the Middle East issue.

Earlier, Wirajuda said the dispute on Iran nuclear, the issue of Afghanistan and development in ASEAN would also be discussed during their meeting.

The Minister said that the Clinton visit to Indonesia would listen to the views of the region in an effort to improve the ties between the United States and the East Asia region.

Wirajuda also said Hillary Clinton had offered a strategic partnership with Indonesia during a phone call last Thursday and would need further discussions to follow up the plans.

"During the call, she wanted to make a strategic partnership with the country but both of us have yet to formulate the substances and procedures over the cooperatives," Wirajuda added.

Hillary Clinton, who just arrived here Wednesday afternoon after a two-day visit in Japan, will visit the Jakarta-based the Secretariat of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).

On Thursday, Hillary Clinton will meet with Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono before leaving for South Korea.

(Xinhua News Agency February 18, 2009)

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