… ekoran kejayaan Perdana Menteri Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Abdul Razak, mencapai kata sepakat dengan ketua pemisah Alexander Borodai supaya mayat mangsa-mangsa pesawat MH17 serta kotak-kotak hitamnya, dikembalikan kepada wakil negara kita.
“… apparently achieved what pressure from far more powerful nations had failed to accomplish,” menurut laporan New York Times, memuji usaha dan kejayaan Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib, sambil menempelak kegagalan kuasa-kuasa besar untuk menanganinya.
Berikut ialah artikel penuh laporan untuk siaran pada Isnin, 21 Julai, yang di bawah tajuk ‘Malaysia Premier Brokers Deal to Recover Black Boxes’;
MR NAJIB… Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announces that two black boxes from the downed Malaysia Airlines flight will be handed over by Ukrainian rebels. Credit Olivia Harris/Reuters
By KEITH BRADSHER and CHRIS BUCKLEYJULY
KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Najib Razak’s announcement that his government had reached an agreement with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, for the transfer of the bodies and so-called black boxes from Flight 17 to Malaysian representatives there, apparently achieved what pressure from far more powerful nations had failed to accomplish.
Mr Najib said in a live television broadcast to his nation early Tuesday (NOTE : July 22) that the agreement with Alexander Borodai, a commander of the separatist forces in Donetsk, Ukraine, called for the bodies to be taken by train to Kharkiv, a city held by the Ukrainian government. Six Malaysian representatives were to oversee the transfer of the bodies in Kharkiv to Dutch custody.
Under the agreement, the bodies and the Malaysian representatives would then be flown in a Dutch C-130 Hercules transport plane to the Netherlands for identification and repatriation of remains, Mr Najib said.
The two black boxes from the plane – which are actually orange – were to be handed over to Malaysian representatives in Donetsk, the eastern Ukraine city that is the headquarters of the pro-Moscow separatists.
If all participants honor the deal, it would be a diplomatic success for Malaysia. Mr Najib said that at times over the past few days he had wanted to be more outspoken about events in Ukraine, “but sometimes, we must work quietly in the service of a better outcome.”
‘UNUSUAL SPATE OF DIPLOMACY BY MR NAJIB’
The agreement is the result of an unusual spate of diplomacy by Mr Najib, who held a series of secret telephone calls with Mr Borodai.
A person with a detailed knowledge of the negotiations said that Mr Borodai concluded that he would only release the bodies and black boxes to Malaysia, although Malaysia would then transfer the bodies to the Netherlands and make the black boxes available for an international investigation.
The backdrop for the negotiations was a slowly growing criticism within Malaysia, including by some in the political opposition, that Mr Najib did not appear to be more publicly critical of the separatists or Russia.
The agreement with the separatists followed four days of sometimes frenetic diplomacy in which a series of senior Malaysian officials – including the country’s foreign minister and transport minister – rushed to Kiev, Moscow and Amsterdam to broker a deal.
Malaysia, and particularly Mr Najib, have played an outsize role in diplomatic agreements in Southeast Asia in recent years, and tried to apply those skills to dealing with the separatists.
MR NAJIB’S EARLIER ROLE IN MYANMAR
Mr Najib brokered the peace agreement early this year between the Philippines government and a long-running insurgency in the south of the country, and he played an earlier role in helping persuade the military government in Myanmar to begin the evolution there toward a democratically elected government.
Malaysia has an enormous stake in resolving the problems that have impeded a prompt investigation of the crash and the quick recovery of the 298 victims, who are exposed to abuse and tampering.
The downed jet belonged to the Malaysian national carrier, and those who died included 43 Malaysian citizens, 15 of them crew members. As well, Malaysia was already struggling with the unexplained loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, still missing more than four months after it disappeared after turning from its planned course.
Investigators have concluded that Flight 370 ended in the southern Indian Ocean off the western coast of Australia, but the confusion and missteps that plagued the first days of the search left an enduring blemish on the Malaysian government.
A big question, which was not immediately clear, was why the Ukrainian separatists chose to deal with the Malaysians at a time when the separatists were under pressure by many countries to release the bodies and surrender the black boxes.
THE ADVANTAGE OF BEING A NONALIGNED MOVEMENT COUNTRY
One possible advantage for Malaysia is that it has long been a leading member of the nonaligned movement of developing countries that sought during the Cold War to steer a neutral course between the United States and the Soviet Union. More recently, Malaysia has tried to maintain good relations with Russia, China and the United States at the same time.
While the Netherlands is a member of NATO, an organization seen as threatening by many pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, Malaysia is a distant Southeast Asian nation that has stayed largely silent on the turmoil there.
Almost three-fifths of Malaysia’s population is Muslim, and the country’s foreign policy has often been more focused in recent years on the Middle East, including heavy criticism in recent days of Israel for its military operation in Gaza.
Nearly 20 million of Malaysia’s 30 million people are Muslim, and anger here over news reports of victims’ bodies lying untended or treated crudely have been magnified by Islamic expectations that the deceased would be promptly buried in graves after being washed and dressed in white. - NYT/Khabar