KUALA LUMPUR, May 17 — McDonald’s Malaysia has denied channelling aid to Israel, and described the matter as a blatant lie and slanderous.
Its managing director and local operating partner Azmir Jaafar explained that McDonald’s Malaysia (Gerbang Alaf Restaurants Sdn Bhd) has been fully taken over by Saudi Arabia’s Reza Group with a local business partner since 2017, in which the company’s equity is fully owned by Muslims.
He also stressed that as a local company, Mcdonald’s Malaysia does not contribute, support or be involved in any political or religious conflicts in any country.
“McDonald’s Malaysia is aware of the existence of a viral WhatsApp message regarding a boycott call on our brand. McDonald’s Malaysia wishes to clarify that the boycott is unsubstantiated and the statement about our brand channelling assistance to Israel is a blatant lie and slanderous,” he said in a statement today.
Azmir said that the company’s stance on the issue had been explained at length in 2017, and shared widely with the public through their WhatsApp messages, besides being published by the mainstream media, online and in blogs.
He said that in the same year, the company had also obtained the Federal Territories Mufti Office’s view on the matter, which, among others, stated that the call for “wajib boikot” (compulsory boycott) is only valid if it is ordered by the country’s leaders, and boycotting without valid facts can be considered defamation in Islamic law.
Azmir added that McDonald’s Malaysia had lodged a police report against individuals and groups who made the false claim, and spread baseless messages on social media platforms and other channels to boycott McDonald’s restaurants nationwide.
He said that the matter had also been informed to Malaysia Communications and Multimedia Commission for further action.
The company will not hesitate to take legal action in protecting its rights and interests, as well as the well-being of its more than 15,000 local employees.
“McDonald’s Malaysia has never been involved in any agenda which supports Israel. In fact, our explanation on the issue was well accepted by non-governmental organisations such as the Malaysian Muslim Consumers Association (PPIM), Humanitarian Care Malaysia (MyCARE), Aqsa Syarif, Palestine Centre of Excellence and Viva Palestina Malaysia,” he said.
He said that McDonald’s Malaysia is also praying for the oppression and terrorism against Palestine to end soon. — Bernama