Monday, June 12, 2006

Mahathir denies he is gunning for PM - AFP

From correspondents in Kuala Lumpur

RETIRED Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad says he is not aiming to unseat his hand-picked successor Abdullah Ahmad Badawi despite a series of blistering attacks.

"I have no intentions of toppling Abdullah and I am not trying to make a political comeback," he was quoted today as saying by the Star newspaper.

"But something has gone very wrong, and I hope Abdullah will do something about it," he said.

Mr Mahathir last week stepped up his campaign against Mr Abdullah who was handed the top job three years ago, saying his successor had broken his promises and was damaging the country.

Mr Mahathir said he had a habit of "choosing the wrong people" and that he had been "stabbed in the back".

However, in a sign of the veteran leader's waning authority, political leaders have rallied behind Mr Abdullah to pledge their support and loyalty.

They have also criticised Mr Mahathir's comments as damaging and unfounded.

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