South China Sea should remain sea of peace and trade – PM Muhyiddin


MALAYSIA’S position regarding the South China Sea has been clear and consistent, with views it should remain a sea of peace and trade, said Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

“Malaysia holds the view that the South China Sea should remain a sea of peace and trade.

“Thus, matters relating to the South China Sea must be resolved peacefully based on universally recognised principles of international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982,” he said.

Muhyiddin said this during the 36th ASEAN Summit – held virtually for the first time due to the COVID-19 pandemic – hosted by Vietnam, here today.

Muhyiddin said recognising the complexity and sensitivity of the issue, all parties must continue to work together to maintain peace, security and stability in the South China Sea.

“In these times of adversity, it is imperative that we intensify efforts to build, maintain and enhance mutual trust and confidence for the benefit of our region and peoples,” he said.

Muhyiddin also raised the Palestine issue during the summit, where Malaysia is deeply concerned over the fate of the Palestinians amidst the continued volatility in the Middle East.

“Malaysia strongly condemns and rejects Israel’s recent announcement to implement its plan to annex parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territory in the West Bank,” he said.

He said the illegal and unilateral action by Israel clearly calls into question its sincerity towards a peaceful and lasting solution to the long-standing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“It also further diminishes the prospect of a two-state solution, which is supported by the international community,” he said.

Muhyiddin stressed that Malaysia will continue to stand in strong solidarity with the people of Palestine in the wake of Israeli aggression.

He also called upon the international community, in particular the United Nations Security Council, to condemn and reject the Israeli annexation plan and ensure the plan will never be implemented.