Pulau Batu Puteh case: Govt to set up task force to study law on review bid

Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the task force would be entrusted with reviewing laws on the application for review and interpretation of the case.. — Bernama pic
Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the task force would be entrusted with reviewing laws on the application for review and interpretation of the case.. — Bernama pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 9 — A special task force will be set up to conduct a comprehensive study as well as to scrutinise and recommend necessary options by seeking the views of international legal experts on the Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh case, said Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

The prime minister said the task force would be entrusted with reviewing laws on the application for review and interpretation of the case.

He said the setting up of the task force was decided in the Cabinet meeting yesterday, adding that it would be chaired by former Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali.

“The Cabinet has also decided to seek preliminary legal views on legal action under the tort of misfeasance against parties found to have committed negligence and error for not proceeding with the application for review and interpretation of the Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh case,” he said in a statement here today.

On Feb 3, 2017, the Malaysian government filed an application for review of the decision of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on May 23, 2008, which ruled that Singapore had sovereignty over Pulau Batu Puteh while Malaysia had sovereignty over Terumbu Karang Tengah.

Malaysia filed an application for revision of the ICJ judgment over Pulau Batu Puteh based on three documents declassified by the United Kingdom to support the application.

These are the internal correspondence of the Singapore colonial authorities in 1958, an incident report filed in 1958 by a British naval officer, and an annotated map of naval operations from the 1960’s.

On Feb 16, 2017, Mohamed Apandi, who was then the Attorney-General, said he would lead a team of experts to handle the review at the ICJ, The Hague in the Netherlands.

However, in 2018, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government under the leadership of Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad withdrew the application before the case was scheduled to be heard on June 11, 2018.

On May 28 this year, an individual, Mohd Hatta Sanuri, 45, filed a suit against the prime minister and the government of Malaysia seeking a written explanation regarding the withdrawal of the review application. — Bernama

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