Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has congratulated the newly sworn-in Malaysian premier Anwar Ibrahim on Thursday.
“Your premiership comes amidst significant challenges in our regional and global environment. As close neighbours and friends, Singapore and Malaysia should work together to manage these challenges and explore new opportunities for cooperation,” PM Lee said in a statement, adding that he looks forward to meeting Anwar soon.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo also called Anwar on the phone to congratulate him, just before the latter held his first press conference as the prime minister.
Anwar shared a clip of his chat with Widodo on Twitter, saying: “I affirm that Indonesia is a true friend of Malaysia and I hope that trade and business relations, investment, culture and labor issues can be improved.”
Soon after his press conference began, Anwar also received a phone call from Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
He told Erdogan that he looks forward to enhancing bilateral relations between the two countries.
Several foreign missions in Malaysia have sent congratulatory messages to Anwar.
United States Ambassador to Malaysia Brian D McFeeters said in a tweet: “US Embassy Kuala Lumpur looks forward to continuing to strengthen the US-Malaysia strategic partnership under your leadership.”
Australia’s High Commissioner to Malaysia Dr Justin Lee posted a picture of him with Anwar on Twitter, saying: “Australia & Malaysia are the closest of friends.
The Australian High Commission looks forward to working with your team under our Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.”
Japan’s Ambassador to Malaysia Takahashi Katsuhiko said he hopes the new government “will lead Malaysia in unity and further promote Japan-Malaysia relations”.
Philippine Ambassador said Anwar “was friendly with the Philippines when he was deputy prime minister” of Malaysia from 1993 to 1998.
He said it is still too early to comment on the impact of Anwar’s premiership. “Perhaps we should wait for the time when he has formed his Cabinet, especially his foreign minister, before we can see the full implication.”