The Inspector General of Police in Malaysia, Khaled Abu Bakr, has said that there is no problem with leaders of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement visiting the country as long as such visits take place within a peaceful context, Safa news agency reported on Friday. He denied Israeli reports that Hamas official Saleh Al-Arouri had arrived in Kuala Lumpur.
"If they come in peace and do not create any problems then what is the issue?" he told a press conference in the Malaysian capital. "We do not have a problem. This is a free country." Anyone is welcome as long as they do not cause trouble, he insisted. "There is no evidence that Al-Arouri is here, but even so, what is the problem?"
Israeli news reports said on Wednesday that Al-Arouri is believed to be in Malaysia after being asked to leave Doha. Subsequent reports have claimed that he is in Lebanon.
Commenting on the Arab blockade imposed on Qatar, the Malaysian opposition group Ikram said the move only serves the enemies of the Islamic Ummah and lovers of peace around world. In a media statement, the head of the organisation, Mohamed Farid, said that the Israeli occupation is the main beneficiary of the siege.
A number of Malaysian groups have warned against being involved in what has been described as the conspiracy against Qatar. The government in Kuala Lumpur responded by pointing out that it has strong relations with all of the Gulf States, including Qatar.