Malaysia fully supports denuclearisation and hopes efforts towards this end will not only focus on certain countries like North Korea and Iran alone, said Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu.
“It needs to be applied to all (countries),” he told the media on the sidelines of the 17th Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD) in Singapore today.
Mohamad, more popularly known as Mat Sabu, said Malaysia welcomed the nuclear talks between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, which is scheduled to take place in Singapore on June 12.
“It’s a good effort… We (the world) did experience atomic bombing in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. We don’t want it to be repeated in the Asian region.
“That was the technology 70 or 60 years ago. We do not know the nuclear technology that we have now. It is very dangerous and we will give our full support to any effort towards denuclearisation,” he said.
Mohamad also described the scheduled meeting between Trump and Kim as a good start.
Asked to comment on US Secretary of Defence James Mattis’ speech that was allegedly rather hard on China, Mohamad said that Malaysia had always maintained its neutrality, something that the country has been championing since Abdul Razak Hussein’s (Malaysia’s second prime minister) premiership.
In his speech, Mattis had specifically called out Beijing's militarisation of artificial islands in the area.
“We do not want any clash to occur in the South China Sea and we are very concerned about what is happening there,” said Mohamad, adding that Asean member countries have always carried out dialogues with both China and the United States.
Mohamad also described his attendance at the SLD as the new Defence Minister of Malaysia as a good opportunity for him to get acquainted with his Asian counterparts as well as from the United States, New Zealand, Australia, France and Britain.
“It allows me to build relationships quickly,” said Mohamad, who called on Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday and is scheduled to meet Mattis tomorrow.