Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Borneo 1841 - now

It looks like the fighting in Borneo is definitely over, with the Philippines now planning to prosecute Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III in connection with the invasion of Malaysian territory in February. The political ramifications continue to rumble on, though, with the SSKM (Sabah and Sarawak Out of Malaysia) campaigning to have Sabah and Sarawak leave the Malaysian Federation. In a video asking for support, SSKM dates the formation of modern Sarawak to 1841, when James Brooke was appointed Rajah. The country “fell to British colonialism” in 1946, when Vyner Brooke handed rule to the British. Britain, in turn, passed the country to Malaysia in 1963.

Much of James Brooke’s policy was concerned with protecting the indigenous people of Sarawak from what he saw as some of the iniquities of Malay rule. Over 170 years later, it seems that at least some people in Sarawak are fighting the same battles.

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