Angkatan Bersatu Anak Muda (ARMADA) received with great concern news of the reported disguise of a US aircraft as a Malaysian one in South China Sea recently, allegedly for military purposes.
The South China Sea is an area shared by the vast majority of ASEAN nations, all of which uphold ASEAN’s principle of non-interference. Malaysia particularly objects to any attempt at disrupting this long-held tradition in order to protect the region’s peace and stability and its 500 million inhabitants.
Given the flight’s reported origin and activity, it was highly likely that this was an intelligence-gathering activity which risks further escalation, especially given the currently tense relation between China and the US. ARMADA believes that this was not a mistake but a deliberate attempt at manipulating the goodwill that Malaysia and other ASEAN nations enjoy to encroach upon our territorial waters for military purposes.
In no uncertain terms, we strongly condemn this devious act as an affront to our sovereignty and a stunt that had inadvertently hurt not only Malaysia’s international reputation as a peaceful nation, but also that of other ASEAN countries. We therefore urge the US Government to immediately provide an explanation.
ARMADA also calls upon our ASEAN neigbours to join hands to protect the integrity of our territories. The Straits of Malacca and South China Sea – both are supporting international trade and the livelihood of billions worldwide – should be free of any act that may threaten the long-cherished peace and stability that we have thus enjoyed, the ‘Pax ASEANA’.
We also urge all ASEAN governments to take steps to ensure that our nations’ identities will not be compromised in the future. Anything less would be detrimental our interests and good standing among other nations.