World Briefs : President Trump fully supports me: Mattis

President Trump fully supports me: Mattis

HO CHI MINH CITY • US Defence Secretary James Mattis said President Donald Trump has assured him of his full support, one day after Mr Trump appeared to cast doubt over the Pentagon chief's fate.

Mr Mattis, who was flying from Washington to Ho Chi Minh City at the start of a diplomatic tour, said he had spoken directly to Mr Trump by phone late Monday.

"He said, 'I'm 100 per cent with you'," Mr Mattis told reporters.

His remark came after US broadcaster CBS on Sunday aired an interview with Mr Trump, in which he suggested Mr Mattis may be headed out the Pentagon door.


Najib grilled 6 hours over fresh 1MDB case

KUALA LUMPUR • Former Malaysian premier Najib Razak was yesterday questioned for six hours by the anti-graft agency over a fresh case linked to the troubled 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) state fund.

He arrived at 10am and left at 4.30pm.

A source told The Straits Times that the Pahang Member of Parliament was being probed for alleged abuse of power related to contract procurement matters.

Malaysia aims to abolish death penalty

KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia will commute existing death sentences to a minimum of 30 years' imprisonment, should it abolish the death penalty, de facto Law Minister Liew Vui Keong said yesterday in Parliament.

The Malaysian government is expected to table a motion in the House in the current parliamentary session to abolish the death penalty, a sensitive issue in the Muslim majority-nation where capital punishment is seen as an effective deterrent to crime.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 17, 2018, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe