President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has said that the fight against terrorism in Southeast Asia and Australia needs not only hard approach, but soft approach also needed.
“Hard approach alone is not enough to tackle terrorism and radicalism threats. It should be balanced with a soft approach. One of a crucial thing is preventive capacity,” President Jokowi said in his address during the plenary session of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit held on Sunday.
The Indonesian Head of State lauded a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation to Counter International Terrorism signed by the 10 ASEAN member countries and Australia on Saturday (March 17).
“Based on my observation, the MoU emphasizes a balance between hard and soft approaches,” Jokowi remarked.
He also said that Indonesia has two major Islamic organizations, notably Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) and Muhammadiyah, which have been cooperative and supported the Government in spreading the values of tolerance and peace.
Speaking about counter-radicalism, the President emphasized the importance of involving millennial youth in the efforts.
“These young people have become effective ‘peace ambassadors’ because they use language understood by their generation,” he said.
Jokowi also lauded the active participation of Australia and ASEAN in the fight against terrorism.
“I want to convey my appreciation to Australia in promoting cooperation in counter-terrorism with ASEAN,” he said.