26 April 2014
PRESIDENT Barack Obama will be the first sitting US president to visit Malaysia in 48 years, when he arrives today, at a time when Malaysia is facing some unexpected tension with China.
But analysts do not expect any shift in Malaysia’s carefully balanced relations between the two world powers, as Kuala Lumpur and Beijing seek to promote an image of continued close ties.
Tensions had risen after China expressed unhappiness over the slow search for the Malaysia Airlines plane that vanished on March 8. Two-thirds of the 227 passengers on board were Chinese nationals, whose families have accused Malaysia of hiding information, and incompetence.
… Analyst Oh Ei Sun, a senior fellow at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, said the visit will score major political points for Datuk Seri Najib, even if no major announcements can be expected.
IDSS / RSIS / Print
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