US respects Malaysia’s right to free speech in calling for Palestine’s freedom


US Ambassador to Malaysia Edgard D. Kagan speaking to the press during the US 248th Independence Day celebration at Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. — IZZRAFIQ ALIAS/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: US ambassador to Malaysia Edgard D. Kagan said the United States of America respects Malaysians' right to free speech that urges for a free Palestine.

Kagan had commented on a crowd of about 100 protestors that gathered in a silent protest outside Mandarin Oriental Hotel earlier in the evening over the Palestine issue, where the US embassy was holding the 248th Independence Day celebration.

"In the past, there had been friction over Malaysians' right to speak and protest freely. We cherish the right even if it is directed against the US," he said to media personnel at a press conference.

Protestors were seen walking away to the KLCC LRT station at 7.30pm after one and a half hours of carrying placards, Palestinian flags and having tapes on their mouths.

Participants at the protest included former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's son Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir and lawyer Rafique Rashid Ali together with those from Secretariat Solidariti Palestine.

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