Malaysia. According to
Countryaah.com, Prime Minister Najib Razak visited US new
President Donald Trump in September. Najib announced that
Malaysia Airlines has ordered new aircraft from manufacturer
Boeing. The visit to the White House was Najib's first since
the US Department of Justice in 2016 began investigating the
scandalous state investment fund 1Malaysia Development
Berhad (1MDB) to which Najib and his circle are linked.
Among other things, US authorities have tried to seize a
Picasso painting donated to actor Leonardo DiCaprio's
charity foundation and a luxury apartment in New York that
is suspected to have been bought with money from 1MDB. A
son-in-law of Najib who co-founded a Hollywood production
company that financed DiCaprio's film "Wolf of Wall Street"
denied that any irregularities had occurred.
With the US trip, Najib was able to show that he is
safely in the leadership of his party UMNO, which dominates
the government coalition and aims to win the 2018
The government has pointed out that the economy is doing
well - the third quarter saw growth of 6.2%, the fastest
pace in three years. The development was particularly good
in service and manufacturing.
At the same time, it was unclear whether the opposition
could agree on a candidate against Najib. This divide
improves the outlook of the UNMO government coalition. One
of Najib's foremost challengers, Anwar Ibrahim, is serving a
five-year sentence for sodomy, which was served in 2014.
Both Najib and the country's deputy prime minister as well
as culture minister visited Anwar in hospital since he was
operated on a shoulder in November. Pictures of them at
Anwar's bed have fueled speculation that the government is
trying to strike a wedge in the opposition. Anwar's verdict
has been criticized for lack of foundation and has been seen
as an example of how the government uses the legal system to
The February murder of a half-brother to North Korea's
leader Kim Jong Un aroused great interest. Kim Jong Nam was
murdered at the airport in Kuala Lumpur after a cloth with
the nerve poison VX was pressed against his face. Two women
- one from Indonesia and one from Vietnam - were tried in
October on charges of murder. Both claim that they were
cheated and thought they were in a TV show. They risk the
death penalty if they are dropped. South Korea accuses North
Korea of killing Kim Jong Nam. Relations between Malaysia
and North Korea were strained for some time after the
assassination. During the trial, four North Korean men were
named suspects for interference.
In August, the anti-terror unit reported that the
recruitment of volunteers to the Islamic State (IS) has
decreased. One reason was that Muhammad Wanndy Mohamed Jedi,
an important leader, was killed in a drone attack in April
in Syria. He had allegedly been behind an 2016 attack in
Kuala Lumpur. The authorities continued to arrest suspected
IS members in various attacks. Malaysia, Indonesia and the
Philippines announced that they have increased air and sea
patrol in Lake Sulus to counter piracy and militant Islamist
groups such as IS.
In January, Australia, China and Malaysia completed the
search for airline Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. The plane
disappeared in 2014 across the Indian Ocean with 239 people
on board. However, the extensive search effort has
contributed to increased knowledge of the seabed in the
search area. At the end of the year, Malaysia negotiated
with the US company Ocean Infinity to continue looking for
the plane, but you only get paid if the plane is found.