The territorial division of Borneo gained scant Dutch attention until the arrival of James Brooke in Sarawak in 1841, which the Dutch-Indies Government in Batavia (Jakarta) sensed as a threat to their hegemonic position over Bornean coastal trade. This drove the Dutch Governor General, J.J. Rochussen, to issue a decree in February 1846 outlining Dutch terrestrial interests (as opposed to mere coastal control) over Borneo. This document provided a fait-accompli division of Borneo based on the flow of watersheds. This decree was essentially the blueprint that the Dutch subsequently negotiated with the British that resulted in the Anglo-Dutch Treaty of 1891.
The principal document determining the land border between Indonesia and Malaysia on the island of Borneo is the Border Convention or London Convention of 1891 which was signed in London signed between Great Britain and the Netherlands, the two relevant colonial powers of that time, on 20 June 1891. Subsequent agreements between the colonial powers in 1915 and 1928 fine-tuned the border further. Much of the fine-tuning of the border concerned the Jagoi - Stass region in western Borneo, which, after negotiations stalled in 1930, was not yet considered definitive. The treaty and various agreements were subsequently adopted by Indonesia and Malaysia as successor states. The pending status of the maritime boundary in the Celebes Sea, which has been the source of recent Malaysia-Indonesia boundary disputes over Sipadan, Ligitan and Ambalat, may lend to the fact that most boundary negotiations in Borneo between the colonial powers were primarily focused on terrestrial borders inlands.
The convention states that the eastern end of the border would start at the 4° 10' North latitude, proceeding westward across the island of Sebatik off the coast of Sabah near Tawau town, bisecting it. The border then crosses the water channel between Sebatik and the mainland and travels up along the median line of the Tambu and Sikapal channels until the hills which form the watershed between the Simengaris (in Indonesia) and Serudung (in Malaysia) rivers. The border travels generally northwestward towards the 4° 20'N, and then generally westwards but accommodating the watershed, although the Pensiangan, Agisan and Sibuda rivers are allowed to intersect the border. The border then follows the line of ridges along the watershed between major rivers following northwards into the South China Sea, and those flowing eastwards, southwards and westwards into the Celebes Sea, Java Sea and Karimata Straits until Tanjung Datu at 109° 38'.8 E 02° 05'.0 N in the western extremity of Sarawak. The watershed is however not followed in a short stretch southwest of Kuching between Gunung Api at 110° 04'E and Gunung Raja at 109° 56'E where the border follows streams, paths, crests and straight lines which are marked by boundary markers and pillars.
On 26 November 1973, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Indonesia and Malaysia for the joint survey and demarcation of their common land border. Work began on 9 September 1975 and was completed in February 2000. As of 2006, a total of 19 memoranda of understanding with 28 maps had been signed between the two countries pertaining to the survey and demarcation of the border covering a distance of 1,822.3 km of the 2,019.5 km border.
Read more about this topic: Indonesia–Malaysia Border
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Famous quotes containing the words border and/or land:
“For my part, I feel that with regard to Nature I live a sort of border life, on the confines of a world into which I make occasional and transient forays only, and my patriotism and allegiance to the state into whose territories I seem to retreat are those of a moss-trooper.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“For six years you shall sow your land and gather in its yield; but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave the wild animals may eat. You shall do the same with your vineyard, and with your olive orchard.”
—Bible: Hebrew, Exodus 23:10,11.