Malaysia’s tiff with Sin­ga­pore es­ca­lates

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - World - DE­CEM­BER 7, 2018

MALAYSIA’S tiff with neigh­bour­ing Sin­ga­pore over air space and port wa­ters is es­ca­lat­ing, a sign of re­newed bick­er­ing not seen in years.

First came Malaysia say­ing on Tues­day it wants to re­take airspace in Jo­hor from neigh­bour­ing Sin­ga­pore in stages be­gin­ning end-2019. Sin­ga­pore’s trans­port min­istry re­sponded by say­ing that both coun­tries had an agree­ment dat­ing back to 1974 that gave Sin­ga­pore the right to pro­vide air traf­fic ser­vices in the airspace above south­ern Jo­hor.

The very same day brought a Sin­ga­pore protest over Malaysia’s move to ex­tend the lim­its of a port in Jo­hor, the state bor­der­ing Sin­ga­pore. The uni­lat­eral ac­tion en­croaches into Sin­ga­pore’s ter­ri­to­rial wa­ters, Sin­ga­pore’s Min­istry of Trans­port said.

On Wed­nes­day, Malaysian Prime Min­is­ter Ma­hathir Mo­hamad fired back, say­ing moves to ex­tend the lim­its of the Jo­hor port did not en­croach into Sin­ga­pore’s ter­ri­to­rial wa­ters. Malaysia “can mea­sure” to see whether this is true or not, Ma­hathir told re­porters, adding that Malaysia re­mained within its own wa­ters. His trans­port min­is­ter An­thony Loke Siew Fook, ad­dress­ing the same is­sue, urged Sin­ga­pore to stop “ha­rass­ing” ves­sels in Malaysian wa­ters.

The lat­est salvo came from Sin­ga­pore late Wed­nes­day, with its for­eign min­istry say­ing Malaysian gov­ern­ment ves­sels have made a se­ries of “provoca­tive in­tru­sions” into Sin­ga­pore

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