malaysia

Malaysia heightened US attention to Rohingya plight

US President Donald Trump welcoming Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to the White House in Washington, September 12, 2017. — Reuters picUS President Donald Trump welcoming Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to the White House in Washington, September 12, 2017. — Reuters picWASHINGTON, Sept 14 ― Malaysia and the United States have urged the Myanmar government to end the violence against innocents and ensure that humanitarian relief reaches victims immediately.

In a joint statement issued at the end of Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s visit to the US capital, the two countries called for an end to the violence targeting civilian populations, and discussed the need for a strong international community response for the hundreds of thousands who have been victimised and displaced by violence, including those who have arrived in Bangladesh.

According to Najib, he was able to “heighten” President Donald Trump’s awareness in the matter and especially when the radicalisation factor was discussed on the Rohingya crisis.

“This is why the language used in the joint statement was so strong. We both saw this as a humanitarian crisis.

“I promised Malaysians that I will bring up this matter with President Trump and I did,” said Najib at a press conference at the end of his three-day visit to Washington DC.

The prime minister said Malaysia would continue to push on the international front to pressure the Myanmar government to stop the violence of the Rohingya people and resolve this humanitarian crisis.

Asked if this went against the Asean spirit of non-interference, Najib said this matter impinges on the solidarity of the grouping and its image, member countries are allowed to criticise and pressure a fellow member of Asean.

In the joint statement, the two countries also recognised the grave threat posed by North Korea to security and stability across the Asia-Pacific.

“The two leaders expressed their concern over North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile tests, which are a flagrant violation of the multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions and will only further escalate tensions in the region.

“President Trump welcomed Prime Minister Najib’s commitment to go beyond the UNSC resolutions, including reviewing its diplomatic relations and business links with North Korea,” the statement read.

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