Malaysia's Anwar: Obama meeting would have been 'helpful'
Published on Apr 21, 2014 8:13 PM
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysia's opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim said Monday a meeting with US President Barack Obama during a coming visit to Malaysia would have been "consistent with US democratic ideals," after Washington said there would be no such encounter.
But Anwar, who was convicted of sodomy in March and whose opposition is engaged in a fierce political battle with Malaysia's longtime government, stopped short of criticising the US president.
"I am not upset," he told AFP, but he added that a meeting would have been "helpful" and "consistent with US democratic ideals and its foreign policy of promoting freedom and justice."
US officials said Friday that Mr Obama did not plan to see Anwar while he is in Kuala Lumpur, marking the first visit by a sitting US president to the Southeast Asian nation in nearly half a century. They did not rule-out a lower level meeting.
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