Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad (Photo Credit: File Photo)
Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on Tuesday Kuala Lumpur is concerned about India's new curbs on imports of palm oil after a diplomatic row. Vowing to find a solution, Mahathir said, "We are concerned of course because we sell a lot of palm oil to India, but on the other hand we need to be frank and see that if something goes wrong, we will have to say it.”
"If we allow things to go wrong and think only about the money involved, then I think a lot of wrong things will be done, by us and by other people," Reuters quoted Mahathir as saying.
Earlier, India conveyed a strong protest to Malaysia over Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's comments claiming that India was taking action to deprive some Muslims of their citizenship.
Malaysian envoy was summoned to the External Affairs Ministry and he was conveyed India's anguish over Mohamad's comments, official sources said. It was also conveyed that such remarks are both ill-informed and insensitive, the sources said, adding Malaysia was asked to take a long-term and strategic view of the relations between the two countries. Mohamad made some adverse comments against the citizenship law at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur.
The ministry also said Malaysia should refrain from commenting on the internal developments of India, especially without a right understanding of the facts.
After visiting the media centre at the Kuala Lumpur Summit on Friday, Mohamad had reportedly said: "I am sorry to see that India, which claims to be a secular state, is now taking action to deprive some Muslims of their citizenship."
"If we do that here, you know what will happen. There will be chaos, there will be instability and everyone will suffer," he said.
Responding to Mohamad's reported remarks, the ministry in a statement said: "According to media reports, the Prime Minister of Malaysia has yet again remarked on a matter that is entirely internal to India."