Anwar: I view Hamas through the eyes of freedom, not the lens of a coloniser

PUTRAJAYA: Only colonisers view freedom fighters as terrorists, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, adding that he never viewed Palestine's Hamas movement as a terror group.

Anwar said Malaysia would stick to its principles in upholding independence, justice and freedom.

He said being bombarded with tough questions by the international media which accused him of sympathising with Hamas would not deter him from speaking the truth about the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

“German reporters harshly asked why I recognise and am friends with Hamas but my answer was simple: Did the Palestine-Israel conflict start on Oct 7 (2023)?

“No, it began in 1948 when a large number of Palestinians were expelled and killed. Since then, we have witnessed the same genocidal news every single year.

“Think about Vietnam, Algeria, Indonesia and South Africa. All their freedom fighters fought for their independence, and are they terrorists?

“Only colonisers will label freedom fighters as such. For us, (Malay warrior) Mat Kilau was not a terrorist,” he said in his speech during the Prime Minister's Department monthly assembly here on Monday (March 18).

Also in attendance were Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Mohd Zuki Ali.

The Prime Minister said it was unfair to focus only on the Oct 7 attack on Israel when Palestinians have been suffering at the hands of the Zionist regime for over 75 years.

He also pointed to the terrorist label slapped on former South African president Nelson Mandela by western countries before they changed their narrative on the Nobel Prize winner.

“Do not forget that for 20 years, Mandela was considered a terrorist because those people viewed him from the lens of colonisers, not from the perspective of freedom fighters.

“The narrative depends on our principles. It is about freedom, independence and justice. It is a larger ethical question.

“Many asked why I chose to support Hamas but I said I never viewed them as terrorists and I, along with Zahid, continue to enjoy good relations with the Hamas political body,” he added.

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