KL papers revisit Anwar-Nur links
After Malacañang claimed that the Sabah incident was part of a conspiracy, Malaysian media revisited the five-year-old revelation of controversial document archive Wikileaks implicating Malaysian leader Anwar Ibrahim and Moro National Liberation Front chairman Nur Misuari.
The news portals Malaysia Today and Malaysian Insider and a number of personal and anonymous blogs reprinted excerpts from a diplomatic communique that was leaked from the United States embassy in Manila in 2007.
The secret cable was reprinted amid fears from the Malaysia opposition People’s Justice Party (PKR) that their leader Anwar may soon be arrested by the ruling United Malays National Organization (UMNO) which has linked him to the deadly incident.
But there was no claim of illegal activity in the cable, titled 07MANILA1534, which reported conversations US diplomats supposedly had with Filipino lawyer Ombra Jainal, who represented the MNLF, and Filipino general Benjamin Dolorfino, who has since retired.
According to the cable, Jainal described Misuari as “a strong advocate for the recovery of Sabah” while Dolorfino related that Misuari had once bragged that he could conquer Sabah in two hours.
The cable quoted Jainal as saying Misuari detested the Malaysian government for arresting and turning him over to the Philippine authorities in 2002.
“Misuari once commented to (Philippine Major General) Ben Dolorfino that when the timing was right, the MNLF could invade Sabah at 5am and control it by 7am,” Malaysia Today quoted the cable as saying.
Manila Standard Today tried to contact Misuari for a reaction, but he declined to comment.
“Dolorfino commented that Malaysia is not only concerned about Misuari’s intentions towards Sabah, where he apparently still has hundreds of followers, but also about his recent contacts with Malaysian opposition figure Anwar Ibrahim,” the cable said.
The cable also claimed that the Malaysian government, then under Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi, was wary of the close relationship between Misuari and Anwar.
“Anwar is described as an “old friend” of Misuari’s… Over the past several months, Malaysian officials have held at least three meetings with Misuari and his wives,” the cable surmised, based on statements collected from both Jainal and Dolorfino.
But the reprinting of the Wikileaks document raised fears among Malaysian opposition leaders that Kuala Lumpur may be preparing to arrest Anwar, who is renewing his bid to become prime minister in general elections that must be called by June 27.
Another news portal Free Malaysia Today, a pro-Anwar publication, quoted PKR deputy president Azmin Ali as saying it is highly probable that Anwar may be arrested and characterized the move as Kuala Lumpur’s way of diverting public attention from its supposed mistakes in handling the Lahad Datu issue.
“For the past 15 years, they have tried blaming Anwar for everything wrong in the country, but to link him to the Lahad Datu incident is highly preposterous,” Azmin was quoted as saying.
Free Malaysia Today said pro-UMNO newspapers have played up news reports from the Philippines that a politician linked to Anwar had invited the Sulu intruders to Sabah. The claim was categorically denied by Anwar and Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III.
Last week, President Aquino told Palace reporters there are signs of a conspiracy that led to the bloody intrusion of Sulu terrorists in Lahad Datu and at least two newspapers published reports from unnamed Philippine intelligence sources that the intrusion was instigated by a leader from the Malaysia.
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