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Zahid to explain documents leak next week

 | June 20, 2012

The Defence Minister said that he will answer the allegations of sale of defence secrets to a French company next week in Parliament.

KUALA LUMPUR: Defence Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will finally break his long silence over the alleged sales of secret defence documents to a French company.

He said he will provide all the answers in Parliament next Tuesday. The Bagan Datoh MP said this in response to a question posed to him by reporters here.

“Wait until June 26. I will reply in Pparliament,” he said.

On Monday, the Speaker rejected an emergency motion by Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar to discuss the matter.

When pressed further for details, Zahid merely said: “I cannot pre-empt (the question). You’ll have to come here and listen to the official response”.

On May 31, FMT reported that a highly-confidential government document — an evaluation by the Malaysian Navy of the Scorpene-class submarine and contract details — was allegedly sold to a French defence company for 36 million euros (RM142 million).

This claim was made by Suaram, which initiated a French judicial inquiry to look into corruption allegations surrounding the submarine deal.

The NGO said that the secret document was sold by Terasasi (Hong Kong) Ltd to French defence giant DCNS, ostensibly for “commercial engineering” works.

Responding to this , Zahid had earlier said that there was no assurance that the transaction occurred and that he will investigate the matter.

He reportedly said: “There is no evidence to show that it happened. However, I give the assurance that we will investigate thoroughly if this activity is proven because it involves national security…we are currently monitoring the development”.

Hong Kong-based Terasasi’s directors include Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s close ally Abdul Razak Baginda and the latter’s father Abdul Malim Baginda.

The secret document was allegedly sold to Thales International, also known as Thint Asia, which is a subsidiary of DCN (later known as DCNS).

DCNS is the company central in the legal suit filed by Suaram in 2009 in the French courts, which recently commenced a judicial inquiry at the Tribunal De Grande Instance in Paris.


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