Khairy: US spying undermines Malaysia's sovereignty

PETALING JAYA - Reports of US-led covert spying activities in many countries have raised questions about the sincerity of the United States' diplomatic relations with the international community, said Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin.

He said such spying operations undermined the sovereignty of its targeted countries.

He said it was unacceptable for the US Ambassador to Malaysia Joseph Y. Yun to say that the electronic spying facilities set up in countries involved, including Mal­aysia, were intended to upkeep surveillance on terrorist activities and weapons of mass destruction.

"If the US is sincere about its long-standing friendship with our country, they only have to ask for assistance, maintain close cooperation and share information about these threats with the Malaysian authorities such as the police and the army for further action," he said in a statement on Friday.

He termed the alleged spying a result of the United States underestimating the country's intelligence and national security capabilities and underestimating the sovereignty and abilities of Malaysian authorities.

He said the Umno Youth wing urged the Foreign Ministry to take immediate action by requesting the US embassy to clarify the validity of reports regarding spying activities conducted on the Malaysian Govern­ment.

He was commenting on reports that the Australian High Commis­sion office in Malaysia was part of the US-led global spying network.

Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anw­ar Ibrahim described the spying activities as "shocking and scandalous".

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Dat­uk Seri Anifah Aman said spying activities should not be conducted among friendly countries as it would affect existing ties.

In response to the statement, Aus­tralian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said it was not the policy of the Australian government to comment on intelligence matters.