We’ll give clearer explanation on Rome Statute issue, says Marzuki

Deputy Foreign Minister Marzuki Yahya.

KUALA LUMPUR: Putrajaya will provide a clearer explanation on its decision to withdraw from the Rome Statute in the near future, says Deputy Foreign Minister Marzuki Yahya.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an event here today, Marzuki said he will discuss the matter with Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah.

On whether Malaysia has officially informed the International Criminal Court (ICC) on its intention to withdraw, Marzuki said he was not sure.

As for the alleged possibility of the Rome Statute issue being manipulated to the extent that people would go to the streets, as claimed by Saifuddin, Marzuki said the minister would be better informed on the matter.

“Tun (Dr Mahathir Mohamad) has already made a statement on this and I think what Saifuddin said is related to what really happened,” he said after launching a book titled “Mahathir Kami Bersamamu” at the Putra World Trade Centre.

Saifuddin was reported as saying that the Cabinet’s decision to withdraw the ratification was a “political” move, done out of fear of a coup d’etat bid, spurred on by powers behind the scenes.

Marzuki, who is PPBM secretary-general, also said there was no issue with Warisan’s absence from the launch of Sabah PPBM in Kota Kinabalu yesterday.

“It was not a no-show. Shafie Apdal (Warisan president and Sabah chief minister) met Dr Mahathir at the airport.

“I am also made to understand that all Warisan divisions had their annual general meetings on the party polls, so they were all busy.”

He added that PPBM’s presence in Sabah would only serve to strengthen Pakatan Harapan.

On the South China Sea dispute, Marzuki said Malaysia was still at the negotiating stage with all other countries involved.

Previously, Mahathir had called on China to define the areas of the disputed South China Sea that it claimed to own in view of the importance of freedom of navigation in its busy waters.