Stop the hypocrisy of banning Israeli athletes, Mahathir told

Gerakan has questioned the hypocrisy of the Malaysian government to ban Israel athletes from competing on Malaysian soil, a move the party said was "shortsighted as sports should be free from politics".

Gerakan vice-president Baljit Singh said the "level of hypocrisy and selective persecution were disgusting" as there are instances where discrimination is allowed in this country.

He asked the Pakatan Harapan leaders who support the ban, such as Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, to end the "theatrics" as the ban on the Israeli athletes makes Malaysia a laughing stock in the eyes of the world.

"What if other countries ban Malaysia or isolate its performers, artists and atheletes for practising discrimination against others?" Baljit asked.

"If Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad is truly concerned about discrimination, his stand should be consistent in other cases as well.

"For example, Mahathir should lead the country in rectifying the United Nations International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Icerd).

"Instead, he caved in, to the views of extremists, who said the move would be against the Federal Constitution, which clearly it is not, if only he cared to study the matter," Baljit told Malaysiakini.

Baljit was responding to Mahathir (photo), who remained unfazed about the country losing the right to host the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships.

Malaysia was dropped by the International Paralympic Committee after it announced that it would ban athletes from Israel from competing in the championships.

Mahathir said he had no qualms about banning Israeli sportspersons as he considers Israel’s long worn-out war with Palestine a genocide, even going as far as describing them as criminals.

Baljit concurred with the opinion of those who told Mahathir to also ban other countries that have cases of discrimination against minorities and other communities if he was so against Israel "murdering, maiming and torturing" his Palestinian brothers and sisters.

These include Saudi Arabia, which "tortures, maims and murders" Muslims in Yemen and Saudi Arabia itself, as well as Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan regime, which acts violently against its own citizens.

He went on to name the United States and the United Kingdom, which led invasions against Libya, Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq; besides Myanmar, which rendered the Rohingyas stateless and Malaysians themselves for discriminating against foreigners and the Orang Asli communities.

"Why go so far? Look inside your country itself. Why give special treatment to preacher Zakir Naik, who is clearly wanted for several crimes in his own country, India? Why protect him here? Is this not selective discrimination?

"Please stop the hypocrisy, Mahathir and Pakatan Harapan, before you become an outcast in the world," Baljit added.

Source: https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/462275

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