KL, PYONGYANG DON’T NEED A MEDIATOR
Only 315 North Koreans remain in Malaysia, says Zahid
THERE is no need for a third country or party to intervene to resolve the problem between Malaysia and North Korea.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi expressed confidence that the two countries could handle the matter themselves.
He said what was needed was a reciprocal arrangement with North Korea.
“Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman is doing everything to ensure the safe return of the nine Malaysians in Pyongyang.
“We will see that North Koreans here are allowed to return home when their side responds in the same way.
“Also, the issue for North Korea is the remains of Kim Jongnam, which can only be handed over to the next of kin.”
Zahid said this after launching the Jalinan Kasih carnival organised by Kalabakan Umno division’s training and research bureau at the municipal field here yesterday.
He also expressed confidence in Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s policy of continuing to maintain the good diplomatic ties with North Korea, which would ease dealings between the two nations.
Zahid said Immigration Department statistics recorded 2,453 North Koreans in the country between 2014 and this year.
“Out of the 2,453, 11 were students, 193 were MM2H (Malaysia My Second Home) participants, 801 were here under temporary work visit permits, (including) 180 miners in Sarawak.
“But in our record, only 315 are still here. The rest must have returned to their home country.”
He said the 315 who remained in Malaysia included students, MM2H participants and workers. He said they were not being monitored, but the government would know what to do if there were negative elements among them.
Earlier, Zahid said good teamwork with the Federal Government was key to ensure assistance could be channelled to Sabah properly.
He said the close collaboration between Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman had benefited the state.
“This close relationship is not for individual (advantage), but for the people. Close collaboration between the people and the leaders, between non-governmental organisations and politicians, between federal and state level, must be strengthened to ensure continued development in the state,” he added.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman (second from right) at the Jalinan Kasih carnival organised by the Kalabakan Umno division in Tawau yesterday.