KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 7 — Malaysia must accept that it lacks the military strength to go against certain countries that are harbouring Low Taek Jho, the prime minister said today of its quest to retrieve the fugitive financier believed behind the 1MDB financial fraud scandal.
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Malaysia could take a chance and wage a “war” but would not win if played hardball.
“We can go to war but we will lose the war and Jho Low. We are conscious that we are not a very strong nation.
“Sometimes people are nice to us, sometimes they are not. We have to accept it,” he told reporters here when asked if the authorities were considering clandestine measures to bring the Penang-born businessman back for trial.
The prime minister’s media and communications adviser Datuk A. Kadir Jasin had earlier this week suggested Malaysia emulate the Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency known to adopt clandestine measures that include abductions and assassinations, to end the protracted bid to bing Low back for justice.
But Dr Mahathir noted that information on the Penang-born nicknamed the “billion dollar whale” is hard to come by, even though Malaysia’s security forces and intelligence have been working hard.
He dismissed talk that Low might have undergone plastic surgery to change his looks and his possession of multiple passports as merely rumours.
“We are working hard on it to get information, but information is not easy to get. We are working hard to bring him back.
“But it isn’t easy. I am told he may carry several passports, told he may have undergone several alterations to his face. All these rumours, don’t have proof,” said Dr Mahathir.
The prime minister said he is unaware if the wanted man is hiding in the east or the west.
He added that Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador only updates him as and when needed, instead of giving him constant reports.
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