TEMPO.CO, Canberra - Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot said he had written back to Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as he tried to smooth diplomatic tensions between the two countries brought on by spying allegations.
On Thursday, Mr. Abbott told Parliament he had received a letter from the Indonesian president. His admission came a day after Indonesia suspended military and intelligence cooperation with Australia, with the angry Mr. Yudhoyono announcing he would write to Mr. Abbott demanding an official explanation of why Australian spies tapped his phone.
Mr. Abbott said he had replied to Mr. Yudhoyono's letter, but did not reveal the details of his correspondence. He also said one of his priorities as prime minister was to maintain a strong relationship with Indonesia.
"There'll be good days and there'll be better days. But my determination is to ensure that the relationship is constantly improving and my gratitude is always to president Yudhoyono, who has been a very good friend to Australia - one of the best friends we've ever had," Mr. Abbott said.
ANINGTIAS JATMIKA | ABC NET