U.S., Western Allies Should Not Preclude Malaysia From Being Friendly To China: Malaysian PM

(MENAFN- Nam News Network) MELBOURNE, Mac 5 (NNN-BERNAMA) – Malaysian PM, Anwar Ibrahim, said here yesterday that, the U.S. and its Western allies should not preclude Malaysia from being friendly to China.

Anwar, who is currently in Melbourne for a summit of Australia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), explained his recent denunciation of“China-phobia” among the United States and some of its Western allies.

“My reference to China-phobia is because (of) the criticism levied against us for giving additional focus to China,” Anwar told a joint press conference with Australian Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese.

“Right now China seems to be the leading investor and trader into Malaysia,” Anwar was quoted as saying, at the press conference, according to a transcript by Albanese's official website.

The Malaysian leader said, his country is“fiercely independent” and does not want to“be dictated by any force.”

“So, once we remain to be an important friend to the U.S. or Europe and Australia, they should not preclude us from being friendly to one of our important neighbours, China,” Anwar said.

“And if they have problems with China, they should not impose it upon us. We do not have a problem with China,” he said.

Last month, Anwar condemned the so-called“China-phobia” among the United States and some of its Western allies, in an interview with the London-based Financial Times.

“Why must I be tied to one interest? I don't buy into this strong prejudice against China, this China-phobia,” he said in the interview.

Anwar calls China an important neighbour, and has said, his government will give priority to enhancing relations with China in the fields of trade, investment and culture.– NNN-BERNAMA


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