Malaysia will not host programmes involving Israeli participation


The Cabinet has decided that Malaysia will not host any programmes or events — including sports — in future which involves the participation of Israelis, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah (picture) said yesterday.

At its meeting two weeks ago, the Cabinet also decided that Israelis would not be permitted to enter Malaysia to attend any programmes or events, he said.

“The Cabinet’s decision is reflective of the firm stand of the Malaysian government,” he told a press conference after receiving a memorandum from 43 non-governmental organisations in support of the freedom of Palestine at Wisma Putra in Putrajaya.

Earlier, Saifuddin also received a memorandum handed over by Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Malaysia chairman Prof Dr Mohd Nazari Ismail stating the support for the Malaysian governments action
in prohibiting Israeli athletes from entering the country.

“I thank all of you for coming up with a memorandum in supporting the pledge for Palestine. We look forward to working closely (in the matter) pertaining to our brothers and sisters in Palestine,” Saifuddin said.

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has said that the government is firm in prohibiting Israeli athletes from participating in the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships to be held in Kuching from July 29 to Aug 4.

The ban on the Israeli athletes has elicited an objection from the Olympic Committee of Israel which has continued to pressure the organisers to have visas issued to their athletes.

The championships are seen as an important platform for qualification to the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.