Anwar Admits Western Powers Threatened Him For Supporting Palestine

About 20,000 people attended the 'Malaysia Bersama Palestin' rally last night, 24 October.

Cover image via Bernama via New Straits Times & Ahmad Ukasyah/Berita Harian

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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has claimed that Western powers have attacked him over his criticism of the Israeli government following the war in Gaza

Speaking during his speech at the 'Malaysia Bersama Palestin' rally in Axiata Arena last night, 24 October, he said he will not be cowed and will remain steadfast behind the Palestinian people.

"I am criticised now and started to be attacked in Europe, the US, and, of course, Israel. We have to be careful. As I said, as long as I am given a mandate by the people, I will not give in to those threats.

"We will always fight. Malaysia is a country where we decide what is right and we understand what freedom is. We will fight for the Palestinian struggle forever," Berita Harian quoted him as saying.

He denounced Western governments for backing Israel despite the atrocities the latter commits, including bombing hospitals and destroying schools, acts which he described as "height of barbarism", reported FMT.

Anwar was joined by Agriculture and Food Security Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu, Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil, as well as Deputy Finance Ministers Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan and Steven Sim.

Anwar giving a speech at the 'Malaysia Bersama Palestin' rally in Axiata Arena last night, 24 October.

Image via Bernama via Berita Harian

The prime minister arrived at the gathering with more than 20,000 people at 9pm yesterday after returning from an official working visit to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and several Middle Eastern countries

"In Malaysia's history, we have always voiced our concern from afar.

"However, this is the first time that a Malaysian leader has gone all the way to Saudi, and around to Riyadh, Cairo, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Istanbul, and Turkiye [to] discuss the welfare and declare support for the Palestinians amidst the Israeli aggressions," said Anwar, reported New Straits Times.

"I met with many gulf country leaders, including King Salman and the King of Bahrain, and held discussions on what measures to take and how to address this violation of basic human rights against the people of Gaza.

"Where is the justice, where is democracy [and] humanity (in the case of Israelis attacking Palestinians)?" said Anwar, who was wearing a Palestinian keffiyeh scarf around his neck.

He also revealed that he managed to convince the Egyptian government to allow humanitarian aid to be transported to Gaza via the Egyptian border.

Anwar also said many Middle Eastern leaders expressed great respect for Malaysia

"It means they hope that we do something more. Not to treat this issue as an Arab issue but as an Islamic and humanitarian issue," FMT quoted him as saying.

On 7 October, the war between Israel and Hamas began following the latter's surprise attack on several locations in Israel.

In response, Israel carried out a heavy bombardment of Gaza, resulting more than 5,000 deaths, with about half of the casualties being children. Another 15,000 people sustained injuries.

Anwar said that the situation in Gaza could deteriorate further, with the potential for US military intervention in the region.

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