Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Aussies 'spy' on Indonesia

18 November 2013, 20:32

Sydney - Australian spy agencies attempted to listen to the phone calls of Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and targeted his wife and senior ministers, reports said on Monday, drawing a demand for answers from Jakarta.

Secret documents leaked by US whistleblower Edward Snowden, obtained by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and The Guardian newspaper, name the president and nine of his inner circle as targets of the surveillance.

The documents show that Australia's electronic intelligence agency, the Defence Signals Directorate, tracked Yudhoyono's activity on his mobile phone for 15 days in August 2009, when Labour’s Kevin Rudd was prime minister. It reportedly intercepted at least one call.

A list of targets also included his wife Ani, Vice President Boediono who was in Australia last week, former vice president Yussuf Kalla, the foreign affairs spokesperson, the security minister and the information minister, the reports said.


Yudhoyono's office demanded an explanation from Canberra.

"The Australian government urgently needs to clarify on this news to avoid further damage," spokesperson Teuku Faizasyah told AFP in a text message.

"The damage has been done," he added.

The ABC said one of the documents was titled "3G impact and update" and appeared to chart attempts by Australian intelligence to keep pace with the roll-out of 3G technology in Indonesia and across Southeast Asia.

A number of intercept options were listed and a recommendation was made to choose one of them and to apply it to a target in this case the Indonesian leadership, the broadcaster said.

The latest release of Snowden documents comes just weeks after reports claimed Canberra's overseas diplomatic posts, including in Jakarta, were involved in a vast US-led surveillance network, which sparked an angry reaction from Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa.

This was followed by The Guardian reporting earlier this month that Australia and the United States mounted a joint surveillance operation on close neighbour Indonesia during 2007 UN climate talks in Bali.

In an interview with the ABC on Sunday, before the latest revelations, Vice President Boediono played down suggestions of a rift with Australia, shrugging off the disputes as normal neighbourly problems.

"It's normal for next-door neighbours to have problems," he said. "I think Australians and Indonesians are quite committed to the long-term interests of both countries."

But he admitted to public concern in Indonesia over the espionage allegations.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
4 ways to handle your cheating ma...

He is cheating. How do you handle him?

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Why do men choose second wives?

Why do men choose to have second wives?

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
Wizkid set for twin Kenyan shows

Wizkid is back in Kenya. For two shows.

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
Udada women's festival begins in ...

The Udada women's festival has arrived in Nairobi.

Submitted by
Uhuru pardons 2747 death row conv...

President Uhuru Kenyatta has pardoned a number of death row convicts, sending them to life sentences instead. Read more...

Submitted by
Eugene Odanga
WATCH: Kaka Sungura arrested in t...

Was Kaka Sungura arrested in town?