NEWS

Utusan to Chinese envoy: Deal with prostitutes, not Petaling Street

Published
Modified 28 Sep 2015, 1:49 am

Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia has lashed out at the Chinese ambassador saying he would do better to deal with his nation's prostitutes than to meddle in the Petaling Street issue.

This, the newspapers said in an opinion piece under the collective pen name Awang Selamat, was because Malaysia is allegedly flooded by sex workers from China.

"(Ambassador Huang Huikang) should trust this country's authorities to deal with the threat of illegal demonstrations at Petaling Street, which did not even happen.

"It would be better if the ambassador gives more focus to the issue of large numbers of Chinese nationals in the prostitution and massage industry in (Malaysia) as the Chinese government is more stern in dealing with such matters in their own country," Awang said in Utusan 's Sunday edition Mingguan Malaysia .

The newspaper demanded an apology from Huang for the remarks made during his visit to Petaling Street on Friday.

"Huang needs to apologise or return to his country and be replaced with another diplomat who has more courtesy.

"Hopefully this will be the first and last violation by a Chinese diplomat. Do not be a busybody and go overboard," said Awang, usually one of the daily's senior editors.

'We can interfere in China too'

Huang had raised eyebrows after he visited Petaling Street on the eve of a planned protest there that was racially-charged and declared the Chinese government was against racial discrimination and extremism.

In a statement yesterday, the Chinese embassy defended Huang's visit, stating it was an act of goodwill in conjunction with the mid-autumn festival.

However, Utusan described the remarks as "shameful" as the ambassador should have known his limits, adding that China too would not like any quarters to interfere in its domestic affairs.

"Awang would like to remind China that it too faces many problems in the country and foreign diplomats including Malaysia can also interfere and comment on anything," it said.

Huang on Friday handed mooncakes to Petaling Street traders to celebrate mid-autumn or mooncake festival which falls today.

However, his statement which appeared to be a subtle reference to the racially motivated protest at Petaling Street led by government-linked figures, surprised Putrajaya.

Wisma Putra reportedly summoned Huang over his remarks and he is expected to provide his explanation to Malaysian officials tomorrow.

Petaling Street, also known as Chinatown, was the site of a rowdy protest by the red shirts on Sept 16 and was broken up by the police's federal reserve unit using water cannons.

One of the frontmen of the red shirts, Sungai Besar Umno division chief Jamal Md Yunos, threatened another protest on Sept 26 demanding that Chinatown be opened up to traders of other races and accusing businesses there of selling fake goods.

Jamal had alluded to riots if his demands were not met.

He was arrested on Friday and the planned protest was subsequently aborted.

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