Analysts: Pulau Batu Puteh withdrawal pragmatic, not likely a quid pro quo

Koh Jun Lin

Modified 8 Jun 2018, 12:23 am

Malaysia’s withdrawal of its Pulau Batu Puteh suit against Singapore is more likely driven by pragmatic considerations rather than some kind of quid pro quo, according to foreign policy analysts.

Both the Asian Strategy and Leadership Institute's (Asli) senior advisor on international affairs Oh Ei Sun and former Malaysian ambassador Dennis Ignatius separately noted that Malaysia is unlikely to succeed in overturning the International Court of Justice’s 2008 ruling that Singapore has sovereignty over the rocky outcrop.

“It’s a realistic move, as further proceedings of the case would have meant mounting legal fees in engaging the foreign legal experts with an uncertain winnability,” said Oh, noting that such pragmatism is characteristic of Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s behaviour...

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