Published: Friday June 22, 2012 MYT 8:54:00 PM
Updated: Friday June 22, 2012 MYT 8:55:01 PM
Singapore refutes allegations of inteference in M'sian politics
SINGAPORE: The Singapore Government has dismissed allegations in the Malaysian media and some online reports that it interferes in the country's domestic politics.
Local television Channel NewsAsia (CNA) reported a spokesman for the Foreign Affairs Ministry as saying, such allegations were "baseless".
This follows allegations that Singapore officials were involved in the April 28 Bersih 3.0 protests in Kuala Lumpur.
There were also reports that some youths were being trained in Singapore as polling and counting agents for the upcoming Malaysian general election.
In a statement Friday, the ministry said its officers were present at the Bersih 3.0 rally as impartial observers.
The spokesman said that was "part of their normal professional diplomatic duties". He said the officers did not wear yellow to avoid being mistaken as rally participants.
They avoided Merdeka Square, which had been declared out of bounds by the Malaysian authorities.
The ministry said what its officers did were "legitimate duties of diplomats to observe political developments in their countries of posting".
It explained that a diplomatic officer "is expected to be updated on the host country's developments and to understand situations and sentiments on the ground".
"I reiterate that these are normal functions for a diplomat. Indeed, other foreign diplomats in KL were also observing the rally. Given this, it is odd that some quarters of the Malaysian media seem to be singling out Singapore," CNA quoted the ministry spokesman as saying.
CNA said the ministry also rejected an allegation that Singapore contravened the Vienna Convention.
Separately, the Bersih group has clarified (on its Faceboook page) that the training of Polling and Counting agents in Singapore was an event "organised by Malaysians for Malaysians only".
CNA said Singapore authorities were checking on these claims. - Bernama