A case of “Pot calling the kettle black”: BN, The International Republican Institute (IRI) and PH…

@IRIglobal

The International Republican Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to advancing freedom and democracy worldwide.

The IRI is now under public scrutiny after its president Daniel Twining told a July 11 forum in Washington that his group has been working to “strengthen” Malaysian opposition parties since 2002.

Umno took this as proof of foreign interference in Malaysia’s affairs and have called for an investigation.

However, PKR leaders who have admitted to interacting with IRI officials have stated that they are free from IRI influence and pointed out that some former BN component parties had engaged the IRI as well.

The IRI itself has denied that its work was designed to undermine BN when it was in power, and stressed that they also worked with the former ruling coalition to promote democracy.

https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/437891

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8 August 2018

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PM’s Department co-hosted IRI-funded programme in 2015

Published:  |  Modified:

The National Unity and Integration Department, a subsection of the Prime Minister’s Department, collaborated in a programme that was funded through the Washington-based International Republican Institute (IRI) in 2015.

The National Unity Youth Fellowship Programme was co-hosted by the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) and it ran from February to September 2015.

According to sources, the IRI supported the programme by securing a US$375,000 (RM1.5 million) grant from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), which is in turn sponsored by the US Congress.

However, it is not certain if the IRI was the only source of funding for the programme.

The programme involved training 20 Malaysians between the ages of 20 and 30 with skills and knowledge to “champion moderation and national unity” as envisioned in the Rukunegara.
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Sources said the programme participants participated in pre-arranged meetings with interest groups, community leaders from various states, Perlis Mufti Asri Zainul Abidin…..and members of the then-BN administration.

This culminated in a national conference on unity held at the Integrity Institute of Malaysia on Sept 16, 2015, the keynote speaker of which was BN Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.

https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/437891

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Najib argued that the cooperation between IRI and Pakatan is much worse than the letter penned to the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), which led certain quarters to accuse the Barisan Nasional administration of treason.

“If you accuse (former chief of the Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation) Datuk Hasanah (Abdul Hamid) of treason, this is a lot worse because this is direct interference in our electoral process.

“As you know in America, they even appointed a special prosecutor to investigate whether the Russians interfered in the US presidential election (in 2016).

“Now, there is an open admission that they (IRI) had been working since 2012 to change the government (in Malaysia), or for a regime change.

“This is a very serious matter, as we should not allow foreign interference in a domestic process,” he told reporters in Parliament on Tuesday.

Read more at https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/08/07/najib-calls-for-inquiry-into-ties-between-pakatan-and-iri/#UJxIW9TuAd3ziqg2.99

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