Malaysia to settle its problem with North Korea, says Dr M

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad speaks to reporters after chairing the Pakatan Harapan presidential council meeting in Putrajaya February 1, 2019. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad speaks to reporters after chairing the Pakatan Harapan presidential council meeting in Putrajaya February 1, 2019. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

PUTRAJAYA, Feb 12 —  Ahead of the second US-North Korea leaders’ summit, Malaysia’s Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad says Malaysia is ready to settle its problem with North Korea which followed the high-profile assassination of Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Malaysia.

“Malaysia will settle its problem with North Korea later,” he said after presenting Bersatu membership cards to six members of Parliament who left Umno at the Perdana Leadership Foundation here today. Dr Mahathir is Bersatu chairman.

The Prime Minister said this when responding to a question whether Malaysia viewed the second summit between United States and North Korean leaders as a positive development to reopen its embassy in North Korea.

President Donald Trump recently announced that his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will take place in Hanoi, Vietnam, on February 27 and 28.

The murder of Jong Nam at the KL International Airport 2 (klia2) in 2017 sparked diplomatic row between Malaysia and North Korea. According to previous reports, the Malaysian Embassy in Pyongyang has not been staffed since April 2017.

In an interview with Nikkei Asian Review last year, Dr Mahathir was reported to have said that Malaysia would reopen its embassy in Pyongyong and might re-establish its relationship with North Korea.

Dr Mahathir said Malaysia did not want to see confrontation and conflict with any country.

“Any attempt by any country to work with Malaysia will be welcome,” he added. — Bernama