KUALA LUMPUR, June 7 — Malaysia’s success in the legal dispute against the claims made by the purported heirs of the long-defunct Sulu Sultan in the Paris Court of Appeal yesterday proves that the country was right all along in defending its rights and sovereignty.
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir said that said the success also showed that the case brought by Malaysia was true and accurate while the case brought by the Sulu side was an effort made for the benefit of certain parties.
“I have also met with my French counterpart before, explaining Malaysia’s stance, states and territories.
“Based on Malaysia’s position, the French side agreed with Malaysia’s stance. Malaysia’s rights are recognised internationally based on international law,” he told a press conference at Parliament here today.
He said the close cooperation among parties involved in the issue, led by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Institutional Reform) Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said had also resulted in a very meaningful decision for Malaysia.
Yesterday, the Paris Court of Appeal upheld Malaysia’s challenge against the partial award rendered on May 25, 2020, by Dr Gonzalo Stampa in the case filed by eight citizens of the Philippines, who are purported heirs of the long-defunct Sultan of Sulu (claimants).
The decision means that the claimants cannot rely on the sham award in France for any purpose.
The group claiming to be heirs of the Sulu Sultanate was reported to have taken legal action in the Spanish Court to seek compensation for land in Sabah, which was allegedly leased by their ancestors to a British trading company in 1878.
They then took the matter to the Spanish arbitrator in 2019 and the purported arbitrator, Stampa, who was appointed by the group of individuals, decided in the claimants’ favour.
Stampa had issued a final award of US$14.9 billion (RM62.59 billion) against Malaysia and Malaysia had used all legal remedies to annul the award given by Stampa to claimants in courts in Spain, France, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
On March 14 this year, the Paris Court of Appeal upheld the stay order obtained by the Malaysian government in France on July 12, 2022, against the enforcement of the award.
Therefore, the suspension order obtained by Malaysia regarding the enforcement of the award is maintained.