Saturday, November 18, 2023

It pays to annoy: How Malaysia got Gaza to be heard in San Francisco

San Francisco, Nov 17: PM Anwar Ibrahim should be delighted with the outcome of the APEC meetings which ended today but he said he was only “quite happy”.

“I regretted that we (the leaders) were unable to reach justice a consensus on Gaza,” he said at the conclusion of the 30th APEC leaders meeting here. 

“I am grateful for the opportunity to bring the Palestine issue out into the open and in not a combative way.

“But I wish (the US), which has been at the forefront of humanitarian issues, had been more consistent when it came to Gaza. 

“Like I said in front of President (Joe) Biden earlier this afternoon, each day delayed means hundreds maybe thousand of Palestinian lives, including children and women,” he said. 

The PM spoke to Malaysian journalists after a dinner with the Malaysian diaspora, which was the last official event in his packed schedule that started last Monday. 

Foreign Minister Zambry Abdul Kadie, MITI minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz, and KKD Minister, along with Malaysian envoy to the US, Nazri, accompanied Anwar at the press conference. 

Throughout the APEC meetings, Anwar had been a thorn in the flesh for host the US, which has
ruled out a ceasefire for Gaza. 

With the staunch support of his counterparts from Indonesia and Brunei, Zambry insisted ni that if APEC wouldn’t support Gaza, it should not be making any geopolitical statement at all that support, say, Ukraine. 

“Any geopolitical statement to be issued must be fair and not hypocritical,” Zambry said. 

And as a result of Malaysia’s protests, the APAC  leadership summit was able only to include economic issues the Badr morning f. Mto go back to its geoeconomic roots. 

Anwar praised Brunei and Indonesia for backing up Malaysia. The three countries issued  a joint statement on Palestine not related to Bangsar. (Chia, Please provide the link to the Bernama article here)

On the economic front, Anwar appeared  more than quite happy. His delegation secured more than RM63 billion of new proposed investments by Microsoft, TikTok, Inovix, Google, and TPG). 

This amount does not include the deal signed by the MCMC under Fahmi’s ministry with BlackBerry. Among other things BlackBerry will set up a Cybersecurity Centre of Ezcellence in Malaysia. 

Zafrul said he has gotten Cabinet approval to create a Malaysian Investmenr Facilitation Centre to cut red tape and hasten approval of new investments.

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