Shafie Demands Action After Manila Provocation

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah has demanded that Wisma Putra summon the Philippines Ambassador in Kuala Lumpur for a dressing down after Manila’s latest act of provocation against the state.

A stern warning must be given to the Philippine Government on this act of violation against Sabah’s sovereignty, said caretaker Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal in a tersely worded statement today.

He was reacting to a report that the Philippines House Committee on Foreign Affairs had approved a substitute measure which required the printing of the Philippine map, including its 200-mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and Sabah, on Philippine passports.

“Sabahans had been assured of full security and protection when it formed the Federation of Malaysia in 1963 and as such the Ministry of Foreign Affairs must now react strongly,” said Shafie.

Calling it an unnecessary provocation, he said Sabah was a sovereign state and that this had been settled a long time ago.

Shafie said Wisma Putra therefore could not afford to be soft especially when the Philippine authorities had come out with all sorts of ridiculous statements of late.

“Sabah is an independent state within the Federation of Malaysia via the Malaysia Agreement of 1963 which has been duly annotated and accepted by the United Nations,” he pointed out.

“As such, the Philippines does not and never had any basis, historical or legal, to make a claim on Sabah.”

Shafie said it was regrettable that the Philippines had acted contrary to the Asean spirit and fundamental principle of mutual respect for the independence, sovereignty, equality, territorial integrity, and national identity of each Asean member state.

Just last month, Philippine Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr sparked a diplomatic spat over a tweet which declared that Sabah is not in Malaysia.