The Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad has told the United Nations assembly his country can’t afford to challenge China. He said his country was too small to stand up to the Asian powerhouse.
China has been called out at the UN General Assembly over South China Sea or alleged mistreatment of minority Uighur Muslims.
Even though Chinese ships are Malaysia’s waters for oil and gas in South China Sea without permission we are too small to fight them. “We watch what they are doing, we report what they are doing, but we do not chase them away or try to be aggressive,” Mahathir told News Media.
“The Malay states have existed near China for the past 2,000 years. We have survived because we know how to conduct ourselves. We don’t go around trying to be aggressive when we don’t have the capacity, so we use other means.”
He said that in the past Malaysia used to send to China “gold and silver flowers every year as a symbol of our being practically, well, subservient to them”.
This month, China and Malaysia agreed to set up a joint dialogue for the South China Sea. Ties between the countries has improve, the Chinese are Malaysia’s biggest trading partner.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has aggressively ramped up China’s presence in the South China Sea and around self-ruled Taiwan. Conducting unauthorized oil exploration surveys and rattling nerves around the region and in Washington.
Malaysia Upset Over the Imprisonment Muslims
Mahathir also said “China’s might” was the reason Malaysia did not speak out much against Beijing’s repression of Uighur Muslims.
“You don’t just try and do something which would fail anyway. Its better to find some other less violent ways not to antagonize China too much. China is beneficial for us and we need its money to help our economy” he said.
“Of course China is a big trading partner of ours.” You do not want to do something that will fail, and in the process, also, we will suffer.”
The United Nations says at least 1 million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims have been detained in China. Beijing describes the gulags as “vocational training centers.” To stamp out Muslim extremism and give people new skills.
The 94-year-old leader also said Malaysia’s police was trying to ascertain if fugitive financier Low Taek Jho was in China. Investigators have named Low, better known as Jho Low, as a key figure in the scandal of 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB). US and Malaysian prosecutors say (1MDB) was used to siphon out hundreds of millions of dollars.