There is no evidence to link the Philippine government with the claims filed by the Sulu group against Malaysia, says Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.
"Based on our checks so far, there is no proof of the Philippine government’s involvement with the claims. I have held two rounds of talks with Philippine President Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr, and we are definitely concerned about this matter. But they (the claims) do not involve the Philippine government.
"The Malaysian government is firm in its stance, and they (the Philippines) know that. Bilateral relations remain good despite the claims but they have not affected the interests of Sabah as an independent and sovereign region with Malaysia," he said in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.
He also said that the Philippine government’s reluctance to establish a consular office in Sabah did not affect the decision that Sabah is an inalienable part of Malaysia.
Anwar also assured that the government would defend the rights and sovereignty of the country and oppose every "attack" by the group.
The prime minister said this when explaining the claims by the so-called heirs of the Sulu sultan, in response to the views of several MPs.
Earlier, Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) and Khlir Mohd Nor (PN-Ketereh) had asked whether there was any involvement of the Philippine government with the claims and regarding the republic’s refusal to set up a consular office in Sabah.
During the explanation session, the prime minister also stressed that the government would not hesitate to take legal action based on the country’s criminal laws against any parties, including Malaysians, who give any form of support to or collaborate with the Sulu claimants.
Anwar said the government would continue to go all out to fight these claims, to safeguard the interests and sovereignty of Malaysia.