Jusuf Kalla’s Role in Aceh-peace negotiations in Helsinki acknowledged

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has acknowledged the significant role of Vice President Jusuf Kalla in the success of the peace negotiations over Aceh in Helsinki, Finland in 2005.
“Jusuf Kalla played a large role but I was also there to ensure things remained constitutional,” said Yudhoyono. According to a local newspaper Kalla has ealier stated that the peace negotiations could be held because of him being determined.
“You can check all the documents. No signatures were there but mine. Why? Because no one else was brave, I certainly reported to the president. He never refused but also never gave direction” he said in Banda Aceh, on June 13. Kalla said that he was criticized by the House of Representatives (DPR) and several ministers during the peace negotiation process.
Responding to Kalla’s comment, Yudhoyono said that as president, he was the person who set up the negotiation team and decided upon criteria so it would not break the rules. He also said that he was involved in drafting the agreement.
“I corrected lines in the agreement with red ink at 3am Indonesian time, 3pm Helsinki time, I intervened directly when it was against the constitution. I have to say that Aceh is a result of our work together, with support from all parties” Yudhoyono states.


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