Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has accused American billionaire and hedge fund manager George Soros of seeking to interfere in the internal affairs of Malaysia.
Malaysia cannot allow others to decide who has the right to be the leaders, he vowed.
"According to reports which we could access, namely, WikiLeaks and DCLeaks, they showed documents that George Soros via the Open Society Foundation had given funds to certain groups in our country like what had been done in other countries, for example the Orange Revolution in Ukraine.
"He also played a role in the Arab Spring, and the latest, the demonstrations in the United States
following Donald Trump's triumph," he said at a special interview with local media in conjunction with the 2016 Umno annual general assembly.
"The newspaper, USA Today claimed that the Open Society Foundation (OSF) was involved in financing the protests. So, certain groups, as we know, they admitted to having received funds from the Open Society Foundation," he said.
"So, the question is, there is indeed foreign interference in the business of our nation. We cannot, as a sovereign nation that upholds the principle of democracy, allow others to decide who has the right to be our leaders," he added.
Najib said this in response to the allegation that the yellow shirt movement – involving supporters of the electoral reform group Bersih - was masterminded by foreigners.
Bersih chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah is being investigated under Section 124C of the Penal Code for engaging in activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy.
She was detained under Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosm) on Nov 18, the eve of the Bersih 5 rally, for 10 days.
The probe involved funds that Bersih received from OSF, a foundation linked to Soros.