PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim has assured that Malaysia’s stance on the war in Gaza will not affect the country’s relations with its US and European investors.
Anwar was responding to concerns that Malaysia’s strong criticism of the Israeli government would affect its economic relations with such countries.
“Of course, it is our (the government’s) responsibility to continuously monitor the situation.
“However, at this juncture, I’d like to provide an explanation and assurance that I have met several key investors from the US.
“It appears that their priority is still placed on (Malaysia’s) political stability, clear economic policies, and expediting of approval processes, which is currently undertaken by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida),” he told the Dewan Rakyat during the Prime Minister’s Question Time today.
He was responding to Aminolhuda Hassan (PH-Sri Gading), who asked about the outcome of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Economic Leaders’ Week 2023 in the US recently.
Anwar then cited an RM63 billion in proposed investments secured from the US.
Last week, Bernama quoted Anwar as saying that RM8.33 billion of the proposed investments came from the trade and investment mission to the US, organised before the start of the Apec summit, while the remainder from various one-on-one meetings held by him.
Comparisons with local minorities
Anwar also said it was unfair to compare the plight of Palestinians to that of minorities in Malaysia, adding that the war in Gaza was a humanitarian crisis.
“I wish to respond and make it clear that there are no local minorities being murdered in masses. There is also no destruction of churches and temples. So even if some disagree with our support for Palestine, it’s not fair, reasonable or sensible to draw this comparison,” he said.
He added that besides mosques being torn down in Gaza, seven churches had also been destroyed.
“So, I reiterate, it is necessary for us to view this issue, whether it is brought up by Muslims from an Islamic perspective, or by Christians – it is a humanitarian issue that needs our understanding and empathy, so that more effective solutions can be made.”
Last week, works minister Alexander Nanta Linggi voiced support for the stance taken by Sarawak activists and NGOs against the acceptance of Palestinian refugees into the state, saying Sarawak must focus on its socio-economic development and prioritise the needs of its own population.
Sarawak cabinet member Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, in response, said there was no need to “jump the gun” as matters concerning the acceptance of Palestinian refugees must first be decided by the federal government.
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