Malaysia explains abstention

29 March 2012 04:14 am - 11     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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While claiming that Malaysia’s abstention at the vote on the UNHRC resolution On Sri Lanka was not a double standard, the Malaysia Government says it is unfair to impose an obligation on Sri Lanka to report in just three months.

Malaysian Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Richard Riot said, during the wind-up on the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong’s Speech in Kuala Lumpur, that Sri Lanka’s problems were too complex to solve in a short time.

He said that the country, which had fought a civil war between 1972 to 2009, tabled a report investigating the war’s atrocities in its own parliament on Dec 16, 2011.

Riot also said that Malaysia had acknowledged Sri Lanka’s national reconciliation process as a domestic issue.

He added that Sri Lanka had taken the “necessary steps” to share information with the international community over reconciliation and development efforts.

Riot was referring to the US-led resolution which was adopted by the UN Human Rights Council on March 22. The resolution was passed with 24 votes in favour, 15 against and eight abstentions.

(The countries that abstained from voting were Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia and Senegal.)

In the last few months of the war, more than 40,000 people were alleged to have been killed by security forces and Sri Lankan rebel group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam (LTTE).

To this, the Malaysian government acknowledged that genocide had indeed taken place in the conflict-ridden country, citing a paper known as the “Darusman Report”.

“…the report has said there were human rights violations and crimes against humanity…(by the) Sri Lankan government and the LTTE,” said Riot.

He said that Sri Lanka’s Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) confirmed the same thing, adding that the country’s security forces had acted in self-defence.

He also claimed that Malaysia’s abstention was not a double standard and that the country did not interfere in other countries’ domestic affairs.

Regarding the Israel-Palestinian issue, Riot said that Malaysia was looking for a peaceful solution between the two states.

He also reassured MPs present that Malaysia would give Sri Lanka a chance to prove itself.

“(But) if during the period of reconciliation, that they don’t achieve peace, then the international community will meet and vote whether they will interfere or not,” he told the House.

Business deals allegation

Pakatan Rakyat MPs however were not satisfied with Riot’s response.

Criticising the LLRC as “weak”, Klang MP (DAP) Charles Santiago said that the LLRC report supported the Sri Lankan government.

Ipoh Barat MP (DAP) M Kulasegaran said that it was “shameful” for Malaysia to be one of the eight abstaining countries.

“I compare, these are irrelevant countries. They are substandard (in) human rights values and so forth. Can we compare to them?”

“No! Malaysia is entirely different. Our standard is very high, our per capita income is very high. The expectation of the world is very high and we are a member of the Human Rights Council!” he said.

He also asked on the allegation that Malaysia’s abstention was due to billion-ringgit business deals with Sri Lanka.

Kulasegaran claimed that there were “many big business people” in league with the Barisan Nasional government who were investing in Sri Lanka.

In response, Riot said that matters of foreign trade did not come under his ministry and that it came under the Ministry of International trade and Industry. (Courtesy: Free Malaysia.com)





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  Comments - 11

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  • Ranjidea Thursday, 29 March 2012 11:08 PM

    Malaysia is not a puppet of USA. Former PM Mahathir was a great leader who stood against the hypocrasy of USA.

    dev Thursday, 29 March 2012 05:07 AM

    great

    Ajith Siriwardana Friday, 30 March 2012 08:21 AM

    Who cares their explanation ????

    Nodrog Thursday, 29 March 2012 05:38 AM

    Not voting was as good as not agreeing to the resolution.

    V.I.S.Jayapalan poet Thursday, 29 March 2012 10:23 AM

    Thanks to Melanesian Tamils. Melanesian pro Sri Lanka stand changed after the agitations pf Melanesian Tamil institutions and political leadership.

    Kantha Wednesday, 04 April 2012 09:02 AM

    Mlayasia abstained because of pressure from tamil NGO. Simple as that.

    gorakaya Friday, 30 March 2012 09:30 AM

    Thanks Malaysia. At least you did not vote against SL.

    Rohan Thursday, 29 March 2012 10:44 AM

    Doesnt make any sense of what you are saying.
    SL Govt and its people are very happy that they came out of the terrorist menace.

    Dasun Thursday, 29 March 2012 11:08 AM

    It's better than , vote in favour to "balance" resolution

    kanan Thursday, 29 March 2012 11:21 AM

    then Malaysiya agreed that genocide happend. then why not SL govt and ruling people not??Indeed SL is locked which they dont know

    jamaldeen Thursday, 29 March 2012 06:21 AM

    THE SRILANKA GOVT, HAS SPENT 3 YEARS ON THIS PROBLEM, CAMEOUT WITH PROPOSAL WHICH NOW THEY THEMSELVES ARE NOT HAPPY ABOUT.

    iF THEY CANNOT FULFILL A SIMPLE OBLIGATION, IN 64 YEARS THEY WILL AND DONOT WANT TO DO IT.
    tHIS IS THE SIMPLE STORY.


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