Come to Parliament more; PM to Muhyiddin for not understanding South China Sea stand

SHAH ALAM: Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin should attend Parliament more often to understand the government’s stance over the ongoing issue involving China on PETRONAS’ exploration in the South China Sea, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said the Perikatan Nasional chairman did not understand the government’s stand on the matter after the Pagoh MP recently criticised the Anwar for being ready to negotiate with China.

“This is the problem with the Opposition head. He was not present in Parliament, he did not listen to our views, read our statements and comments.

“I have said consistently that the PETRONAS’ Carigali project will be continued. That area belongs to us.

“But now, China says no, this is an overlapping region. I said okay if that’s the case. Let’s talk,” said Anwar after launching a program at a People’s Housing Project in Shah Alam on Saturday (April 8) morning.

“If we are not going to discuss, are we going to war then?” questioned Anwar.

Anwar also said that he never gave an indication of giving way towards China’s demands.

“We will proceed with PETRONAS’ exploration project. Full stop,” said Anwar.

On April 7, Muhyiddin criticised Anwar’s supposed readiness to negotiate with China on PETRONAS’ exploration in the South China Sea, saying that it undermined the country’s territorial sovereignty.

Muhyiddin said Anwar’s remarks on negotiating with China indicated indirect recognition of China’s claims.

On April 4, Anwar in a speech in Parliament, said that while PETRONAS would continue its activities, Malaysia was open to negotiations on Beijing’s concerns.

Anwar said Malaysia saw it as its territory and PETRONAS would continue its activities but was open to negotiations with China’s claims.

In 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in Hague ruled that China’s ‘nine-dash line’ (where PETRONAS currently operates) had no legal basis.

Others who lay claim to the area were Brunei, Taiwan, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam.

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