SUPPORTERS of Perikatan Nasional (PN) have launched a counterattack against Prime Minister (PM) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, criticising him for not securing a meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
They proudly point to the “success” of former PM Muhyiddin Yassin’s meeting with the Crown Prince which they believe to be a rare and prestigious accomplishment.
A TikTok video mockingly stated, “PMX was only greeted by the Jeddah Governor, similar to the level of Melaka chief minister Datuk Seri Sulaiman Md Ali,” contrasting this with Muhyiddin’s reception, “More steady PM Muhyiddin previously as he was greeted by the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, a rarity indeed.”
Not only are they humiliating the Melaka CM, they are also validating the murder of a journalist.
PN supporters seem to focus on Muhyiddin’s access to the Kaaba, the holy building in Mecca, as another point of pride.
However, it is worth questioning whether they are fully aware of the legal controversy surrounding the Saudi Crown Prince. It is nothing to be proud of.
Jamal Khashoggi, a well-known Saudi dissident, was brutally murdered at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October 2018.
US intelligence agencies have implicated Prince Mohammed in ordering the assassination. While the truth of these allegations remains uncertain, the undeniable fact is that a heinous crime took place on Saudi territory, and the Crown Prince is currently the subject of a lawsuit filed by Khashoggi’s fiancée in connection with the murder.
Given this context, it is crucial to consider the implications of celebrating such a meeting and whether it truly represents a diplomatic triumph for Muhyiddin’s supporters.
Besides, Muhyiddin can’t bring anything else to the table from the Saudi visit.
Khashoggi’s ex-fiancée Hatice Cengiz wrote on Twitter that “Jamal died again today” with a ruling from the US government giving immunity to the Crown Prince in the case against him.
A BBC report said the fiancée, along with the human rights group democracy for the Arab World Now (Dawn), founded by Khashoggi – had been seeking unspecified damages in the US from the crown prince for her fiancé’s murder.
The complaint accused the Saudi leader and his officials of having “kidnapped, bound, drugged, and tortured, and assassinated US-resident journalist and democracy advocate Khashoggi”.
President Joe Biden himself raised concerns about Khashoggi’s murder during his meeting with the Saudi Crown Prince.
The Crown Prince denied that he approved the crime, consistently saying the allegations were untrue while Saudi prosecutors placed blame on “rogue” agents. — March 26, 2023
Main photo credit: The Star