In early May, U.S. President Barack Obama welcomed Indonesia's announcement at the opening session of the 2010 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference, which stated that they were "initiating the process of the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty."
President Obama thanked "President [Susilo Bambang] Yudhoyono and the Government of Indonesia for its responsible leadership in the global effort to reinforce the nuclear nonproliferation regime," thus advancing President Obama's vision of a world without nuclear weapons.
But this was just the most recent demonstration of the two nations' shared vision for a peaceful, prosperous, and democratic world. Over the past decade, the U.S. and Indonesia have worked together closely on security issues and have developed strong ties, which were bolstered by joint humanitarian assistance following natural disasters in 2004 and 2009. The U.S. sent help and material aid, including U.S. Navy vessels, to help with rescue and recovery efforts after the devastating tsunami of 2004.
Nearly 5 years later, on September 30, 2009, a 7.5 magnitude earthquake hit southern Sumatra, killing over eleven hundred people. The U.S. again sent relief, both civilian and military, coordinating medical support, civil engineering and supply needs with the Indonesian government, nongovernmental organizations and the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID.
In recent months, the two countries have worked together on a number of projects, including joint military counter-terrorism exercises and cooperation to prevent human trafficking.
For over half a century, the U.S. and Indonesia have enjoyed a close relationship. Later this year, that will become a partnership.
In November 2008, Indonesian President Yudhoyono proposed a strategic partnership between the two countries. In February 2009, during her visit to Indonesia, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton committed the U.S. to "working with Indonesia to pursue such a partnership with a concrete agenda."
The partnership is designed to frame U.S.-Indonesian bilateral relations for the next decade, covering issues important to both nations, such as political and security cooperation; trade and investment cooperation; climate change, socio-cultural, science and technology cooperation; educational exchanges and collaboration on key environmental issues.
U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to launch the U.S.-Indonesian Comprehensive Partnership, during his planned visit to Indonesia this summer.
It will be the first such partnership in the sixty year history of U.S.-Indonesian relations.