KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Islamist party PAS today labelled claims made by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that he had been threatened by certain European parliamentarians after speaking up for Palestinian rights in the Middle East as “strange” and “laughable”.
Its secretary-general Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan said Malaysia’s firm stance supporting the Palestinian cause and criticising Israel is well known and is not new as former prime ministers were also very vocal on this issue.
“But none of them had reported being ‘threatened’ due to their assertiveness and vocalness. Even Malaysia also has official relations with the Palestinian government and also Hamas under the previous leadership.
“So why is PM Anwar suddenly ‘threatened’ and that threat is in the form of ‘statements’ made by Members of Parliament?” he asked in a statement.
“If the ‘threat’ in question really exists and takes place, as the head of government, wouldn’t the proper step for the Prime Minister to take be to call the ambassador or representative of the country involved to convey Malaysia’s objection to it, instead of making an open statement without explanation about it?” he added.
The Kota Baru MP said Anwar’s “alarmist” statements were aimed to highlight the latter’s “greatness” and “importance” as the prime minister.
Takiyuddin said such statements have become a permanent feature of Anwar’s administration which until now is still faltering in gaining public support and trust.
“Even more unfortunate, the claim was made in an event that should be fully dedicated to the struggle of the Palestinian people, not riding on it to show the ‘greatness’ of a leader.
“In addition, it can also create a negative image of the country because the prime minister makes such random and imaginary allegations,” he added.
Yesterday, Anwar said he had been threatened by certain European parliamentarians after speaking up for Palestinian rights in the Middle East.
He did not disclose their identities or which member states of the European Union had issued threatening remarks against him, but said he would not be cowed.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Razarudin Husain had told national news agency Bernama separately yesterday that Anwar’s security detail has been increased following the prime minister’s disclosure.
Razarudin was reported saying that the threats could also be linked to economic and trade matters.