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Indonesian President sets foot in Nadi for first visit to region JYOTI PRATIBHA NADI Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, accompanied by his wife Ani, arrived at Nadi Airport last night
18 Jun 2014 11:44

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono arrives at Nadi International Airport last night for the Pacific Islands Development Forum, at which he will be chief guest. He was greeted by Prime Minister Real Admiral (Retired) Voreqe Bainimarama. More on Page 3. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Indonesian President sets foot in Nadi for first visit to region

JYOTI PRATIBHA
NADI

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, accompanied by his wife Ani, arrived at Nadi Airport last night for a historic visit.
He is the first Indonesian Head of State to visit Fiji and the Pacific Islands.
The couple looked relaxed and smiling as they emerged from a plane of Garuda, Indonesia’s national airline.
They were first greeted by Prime Minister Real Admiral (Retired) Voreqe Bainimarama. Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Brigadier-General Mosese Tikoitoga then escorted them to inspect a 100-men guard of honour by the RFMF. President Yudhoyono then introduced his 90 strong delegation to the PM.
Then it was the PM’s turn to introduce some of his ministers and Nadi civic leaders.
The official motorcade under tight security then left for the Sheraton, Denarau, where the visitors are staying. President Yudhoyono will deliver the keynote address at the 2014 Pacific Islands Development Forum meeting tomorrow at the Sheraton Fiji Resort.
Today he will meet President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, hold talks with PM, sign MOUs and attend a State dinner.
Fijian ambassador to Indonesia Ratu Tui Cavuilati said it was an honour for Fiji to receive the Indonesian President and his delegates.
“It goes to show the recognition we have in the eyes of the great Government of Indonesia and it’s no small matter.
“It’s a very important and significant one and augurs well for our bilateral relations. They look at Fiji as a great friend and a key player in the Pacific.
“They are very much interested in the Pacific and they are very much interested in the Melanesian Spearhead Group.
“They are the fourth largest democracy, economically they are a giant in the South East Asia and this visit puts us in a good state as a springboard to greater and deeper relations in terms of economy and trade and investment,” Ratu Tui said.
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