– Counter-terrorism and border security sources say the standoff over spying could have a serious impact on operations if the row isn’t resolved and Indonesia stands firm on its threat to downgrade cooperation.
While there remains some doubt about the breadth and depth of Jakarta’s cuts to cooperation with Australian authorities, experts warn that any halt to federal police work with Indonesian counterparts could, in particular, set back progress.
Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus said about 30 Australian officers are continuing their work in Indonesia for now, but refused to be drawn on whether they might be affected down the track.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has called for an end to some joint military exercises, joint maritime patrols on people-smuggling and some intelligence sharing – though he was not specific and did not mention the police cooperation.
A lightening-rod situation could develop if Australia were to pick up asylum-seekers in Indonesia’s maritime search and rescue zone and attempt to take then back to Indonesia. Under international law, a ship that rescues people at sea must take them to the nearest landfall – in this case Indonesia.
This has been done at least once since the Abbott Government took power. But one Defence source said it would be “a very big call” to try now, given the tensions, and probably would not be attempted.
Members of Australia’s elite SAS regiment were preparing to head home after the “Dawn Komodo” joint counter-hijack and hostage recovery exercise with Indonesian counterparts Kopassus was cancelled.
Dave McCrae, an Indonesian expert from the Lowy Institute who is currently in the country, said Dr Yudhoyono had little choice but to be firm, “given that the Australian government had given him nothing to work with publicly”.
Nick O’Brien, a former counter-terrorism policeman with Britain’s Special Branch, now head of the Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security at Charles Sturt University, said cooperation since the Bali bombings had been “an Australian-Indonesian success story” – David Wroe

About Jumpin' Jack Cash

Deep connections are the most important aspect of my existence. I don’t care if people don’t know what they want. I love books. I’m cynical of love stories, although I’m romantic. I adore gardens. I like women who challenge me. I love the rain as an excuse to stay inside and dream. I'm furiously impatient. If I ask you a question best to tell me the truth as I'm likely to already know the answer. I'm a carnivore. I continuously underestimate the magic of fresh flowers in my home. I love warm rain in the summer. My mood elevates to epic proportions when the sun shines. Tell me not to do something and I'll do it twice and take photos. Running is my antidepressant. I loathe lies. I rarely forgive a lie. Loyalty and honesty are my most noble virtues, and I value them more than anything in other people. I love to love, and am able to fall in love very quickly, although it's only ever happened once. I understood myself and fixed myself only after destroying myself. My greatest excitement comes from deliberately getting lost in foreign cities. I can be extremely loud and frighteningly silent. I hate insinuations. I love storms. Justice for all. I'm a proud man, but welcome the influence of the feminine soul. I have two sisters. I’m a dreamer. I’m a deep thinker. Don’t deal with guilt trips or drama that well. I'm extremely stubborn and persistent. I'm brilliant at keeping secrets. I love driving. I become absolutely and completely lost while watching a burning fire. When the toast pops from the toaster I’m never ready and shit myself. I play the guitar, but require much improvement. Solitude and warmth of the sun are perfect together. I’ve been married once and now divorced. I’m a music junkie. Chocolate mousse is the shit. I curse too much. I find it difficult to make friends. I spent four years as a firefighter. I’ve run my own company since 1991. Bright lights, big cities. I’ve been an executive producer of a feature film. Some people don’t care, and that’s the biggest let-down of the human race. There are cures and solutions for many evils, but no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings. The sound of the Italian language being spoken is as good as my favourite music. I hate corrupt cops. I relentlessly and passionately pursue anybody and anything that sets my soul on fire. I'm a dog lover, and all my dogs are considered family members. I have an obsession with photography. I have some close friends who are household names, but shall always remain anonymous. I’m crazy but not lazy. Losing a soulmate has hurt me badly. My two young sons are the nucleus of my universe. I love airports. I love freedom. If you are dishonest or disloyal, I can erase you from my life and memory immediately and permanently. I yearn to explore, dream about and discover as many friendships, deep connections and places, one possibly can in a lifetime.
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