PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia's Cabinet has asked China's ambassador to Malaysia Dr Huang Huikang to officially explain the statement he made during a visit to Petaling Street last week and whether it had been misconstrued.
Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the Cabinet, at a meeeting he chaired on Wednesday (Sept 30), had unanimously agreed that a statement should be made regarding the issue to put a stop to the polemic and debate over Dr Huang's remarks.
Dr Huang had raised eyebrows with his remarks made at Petaling Street last Friday when he said that China "opposes terrorism and any form of discrimination against races", in an apparent reference to a pro-Malay "red shirt" rally that took place on Sept 16.
He acknowledged that the ambassador had explained his statement when he met acting Foreign Minister Datuk Hamzah Zainuddin on Monday and several Chinese newspapers had carried the report.
"However, the Cabinet was of the opinion that Ambassador Dr Huang should come up with an official explanation on the statement he made. This is to correct the perception, which has been given a negative connotation by certain Opposition leaders and their social media," he told reporters.
Dr Ahmad Zahid described Dr Huang as one of the best envoys from China who had served in Malaysia.
"I deeply appreciate the contributions that he has made in fostering good relations between Malaysia and China," he added.
In a special briefing on Sept 29, the ambassador had reiterated that he never had the intention to interfere with Malaysia's domestic affairs, in a bid to stem a developing diplomatic row arising from the remarks made in Petaling Street.