Indonesia on Tuesday stepped up diplomatic pressure on Australia after allegations surfaced that Australian spies had tapped the phone calls of Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, First Lady Kristiani Herawati and another eight government ministers and officials. Mr Yudhoyono said the action was deplorable and will lead to a review of all bilateral cooperation agreements.

Going public with his anger on Twitter, Mr Yudhoyono in an Indonesian language tweet said: "I also deplore the statement of Australian Prime Minister who underestimates the wiretapping of Indonesia, without sense of guilt." The tweet was confirmed by his office.

Later an English tweet from President Yudhoyono used the word "regret" instead of "deplore," to condemn the Australian prime minister's statement which he said, "belittled this tapping matter on Indonesia, without any remorse."

Earlier on Tuesday, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott told Parliament that he regretted the embarrassment that the spying reports had caused Mr Yudhoyono. He, however, ruled out any apology and explanation, as was being demanded by Indonesia.

"I regard President Yudhoyono as a good friend of Australia, indeed as one of the very best friends that we have anywhere in the world," Abbott said.

"That's why ... I sincerely regret any embarrassment that recent media reports have caused him," the Australian prime minister said, without confirming or denying the truth of reports of spying in 2009

Mr Abbott, however, endorsed Australia's intelligence gathering of the previous government.

"National security ... requires a consistent determination to do what's best for Australia and that's why this government will support the national security decisions of previous ones, as we will expect future governments to respect ours," he said.

"Australia should not be expected to apologize for the steps we take to protect our country now or in the past, any more than other governments should be expected to apologize for the similar steps that they have taken," he said.

Indonesian Ambassador Nadjib Riphat Kesoema, meanwhile, left the Australian capital Canberra on Tuesday morning for Jakarta after being recalled by his government.

Speaking to reports at the airport, he urged the Australian government to come clean on the spying episode.

"I think a good explanation will be the best way ... to ease the problem," Mr Kesoema said.