July 3, 2022

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Mahathir suggests Malaysia reclaim Singapore and Riau Islands as 'Malay lands'

Completely no stranger to controversy, former Malaysian prime minster Mahathir Mohamad has gone forward and mentioned that Malaysia ought to demand that Singapore, the Riau Islands, Pedra Branca, and Pulau Batu Puteh be returned to the nation as “Malay lands”.

The 96-year-old former chief’s remarks got here throughout a speech on June 19, 2022 throughout an occasion organized by quite a few non-governmental organizations below ‘Kongres Survival Melayu’ (Congress for Malay Survival) banner, which was titled ‘Aku Melayu: Survival Bermula’ (I’m Malay: Survival Begins).

“We should always demand not simply that Pedra Branca, or Pulau Batu Puteh, be given again to us, we also needs to demand Singapore in addition to the Riau Islands, as they’re ‘Tanah Melayu’ (Malay lands),” he mentioned to a receptive viewers.

Regarding the “return” of Singapore to Malaysia, Mahathir mentioned that that “there is no such thing as a demand in anyway of Singapore”.

“As a substitute, we present our appreciation to the management of this new nation referred to as Singapore,” he affirmed.

He then added to his controversial assertion by pulling up the ownerships of the Pedra Branca island in addition to the Sipadan and Ligitan islands.

In 2002, the Worldwide Courtroom of Justice (ICJ) dominated that Malaysia held sovereignty over the Sipadan and Ligitan islands, whereas it dominated in 2008 that Pedra Branca belonged to Singapore.

To this, Mahathir commented that Pedra Branca was solely like a “piece of rock the dimensions of a desk” – a verbal jibe in the direction of the island that he has made enjoyable of up to now.

In 2017, Malaysia had really tried interesting to the ICJ to reverse its judgment on the possession of Pedra Branca, however following his ascendancy to his second stint as prime minister, Mahathir introduced that the proceedings could be halted.

Mahathir is not one to shrink back from making controversial feedback. IMAGE: Nikkei Asia

Hold the lands Malay, he says.

Mahathir, who’s at the moment the MP for Langkawi, defined throughout his speech that the lands constituting ‘Tanah Melayu’ had initially been in depth, stretching all the best way from the Isthmus of Kra in Southern Thailand all the best way right down to Singapore.

Through the years, nevertheless, this has lowered to solely embrace the Malay Peninsula, and he puzzled whether or not the peninsula itself would find yourself belonging to a different entity sooner or later.

“I wonder if we are going to proceed to personal the peninsula,” he mentioned. “I’m frightened for the way forward for Malays, whether or not the peninsula land may even be owned by one other occasion.”

He additionally added that immediately’s Malaysia is not owned by the bumiputeras (Malays and aboriginal Malaysians) any longer because of the Malays remaining poor and being compelled to promote their lands.

“Many Malays should not conscious that their nation which as soon as was huge has grow to be small,” he mentioned. “And even this small nation they’ll lose as a result of they’re poor.”

To this, he urged the gang to study from previous errors, and mentioned that it was essential for continued Malay sovereignty.

“If we discover we have been fallacious, we must always rectify these wrongs in order that our land stays Malay land,” he mentioned.

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Cowl picture sourced from TheIndonesia.id and Khan Academy.