KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 12 — Malaysia maintains its stand that the formation of a trilateral security pact between Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States (AUKUS) raises concerns as it has the potential to disrupt peace and stability in Southeast Asia.
Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said it was consistent with the stance voiced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob that AUKUS could provoke other powers to act more aggressively in the region, especially in the South China Sea.
“This stance has not changed even after the meeting with Australian special envoy Vice Admiral David Johnston and prior to that, I had a telephone conversation with Australian Defence Minister Peter Dutton.
“In both of the discussions, I emphasized that Malaysia does not want to be dragged into the geopolitics of the world’s big powers in the region,” he said during the Minister’s Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat today.
He was responding to a question from Datuk Mohd Nizar Zakaria (UMNO-Parit) who wanted to know the government’s latest stance on AUKUS following Johnston’s recent visit.