Posted by SM Maulana
By Hazlin Hassan, The Straits Times
MALAYSIA’S military intelligence director-general Mohd Salleh Ismail yesterday denied claims that his unit had passed a report to Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi on the murder of Mongolian interpreter Altantuya Shaariibuu.
He also dismissed reports that the unit had received intelligence that opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s life was in danger after an aide accused him of sodomising him.
‘There is no military intelligence report on the murder case of Altantuya. This is strictly a matter for the police department and its enforcement agencies to look into,’ he said at a news conference.
His comments came amid a slew of accusations following the probe into Ms Altantuya’s murder and reports of the alleged sodomy.
Prominent blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin, who had earlier claimed that Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak’s wife Rosmah was among those at the murder scene, had also alleged that the military had passed an intelligence report on the case to PM Abdullah.
Rumours were also going round the Internet that an unidentified neighbouring country had provided intelligence that Datuk Seri Anwar faced a possible assassination attempt, and that several hired killers were in the country.
Dismissing the reports, Lieutenant-General Mohd Salleh said the military had not received such information.
‘Whichever organisation said to have given this information, it is not credible information,’ he said.
‘I don’t think any intelligence organisation will admit to giving it to him rather than giving it to the authorities, especially the police.’
He pointed out that despite claims that he feared for his life, Mr Anwar had turned up at a massive rally on Tuesday.
The military intelligence director-general also dismissed reports that foreign military intelligence was involved in ‘plotting the downfall of the country’s leadership’ as untrue, but did not elaborate.
Mr Anwar had over the weekend sought refuge at the Turkish embassy after his aide Saiful Bukhari Azlan lodged a police report accusing his employer of sodomising him. The opposition leader cited personal security concerns, but left the premises on late Monday.
Malaysia has in the past week seen allegation after politically-charged allegation hurled between rival politicians and the government, in the wake of two explosive accusations.
One was Mr Saiful’s sexual assault charge lodged against Mr Anwar, and the other stemmed from a sworn statement – released by Mr Anwar – by a key witness in the Altantuya trial that alleged there were links between the deputy premier and the murdered woman.
Observers fear that the events over the recent days could make the country volatile and unstable.
Lt-Gen Mohd Salleh said the rumours could raise anger among Malaysians and lead to ‘more street demonstrations…(and) chaos’.
‘Malaysians are confused and tired of all these accusations and allegations which are based on fabrication of facts,’ he said.