KUALA LUMPUR – Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today denounced a US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) report on his administration’s likely involvement in the Bumiputera Malaysia Finance Limited (BMF) scandal as an attempt to smear him.

The former prime minister suggested that the theme of the report was retaliation by the US over his overt criticism of the country’s policies.

He also questioned why the document was only released now when the BMF scandal, which cost the country billions, took place in the 1980s.

“They (CIA) are attacking me because I never stopped critiquing them. They are demonising me.

“Why are you bringing it up now? Can you correct anything I’ve done before? The purpose of it is political; some people might benefit from it,” Dr Mahathir said in a press conference at the Perdana Leadership Foundation today.

The Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) chairman then insisted that there other reports by the spy agency that absolved him of any involvement in the BMF scandal.

In the report that was part of 13 million pages of declassified documents released online by the CIA last week, the agency said Mahathir’s administration’s involvement  was likely as it affected his leadership in Umno and Barisan Nasional then.

Later in the press conference, Dr Mahathir also denied he was anti-China in his criticism of the Forest City development in Johor.

The allegation drew criticism from Johor’s Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar, who accused Dr Mahathir of indulging in racial politics.

– Malay Mail