Monday, March 23, 2015

Ex-Journalist Appointed as Australian Ambassador to Indonesia

By Maria Rita

Career diplomat Paul Grigson has been appointed as Australian Ambassador to Indonesia, replacing Greg Moriarty who is bound to leave the country this late December. 

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot appointed the deputy secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade as the ambassador amid the politically-sensitive climate between both countries. 

The last two cases disrupting the ties between the two countries were the repatriation of asylum seekers on boats to Indonesian waters and the exposure of espionage on former Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and a string of Indonesian officials. 

As reported by Sydney Morning Herald on December 2, 2014, Paul Grigson, an ex-journalist with the AAP news wire, was expected to boost the Australia-Indonesia relationship. Grigson was assigned to encourage Indonesia, as the ASEAN leader, to take part in addressing tensions in the South China Sea. 

Grigson has known ASEAN Countries well, since he has recently run the Southeast Asia division of DFAT in Canberra. He was also the Australian Ambassador to Thailand in 2008-2010 and to Rangoon (Myanmar) in 2003-2004.

This article originally appeared 23 March in Tempo.

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