In a shocking move, Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad resigns from his office

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In a shocking move, Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad resigns from his office

ISLAMABAD - In a shocking move, Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad resigns from his office.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has submitted a letter of resignation to the country’s king, his office said on Monday.

The fate of Malaysia’s ruling coalition had been in doubt after weekend talks between some of its members and opposition groups on forming a new government that would exclude Mahathir’s anointed successor Anwar Ibrahim.

The pair had joined forces to win the 2018 election and oust the long-running United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), in an alliance based on a promise that Mahathir would cede power to Anwar.

The tussle between Mahathir, who at 94 is the world’s oldest prime minister, and Anwar, 72, has shaped Malaysian politics for decades and tension has persisted.

“The letter has been sent to His Royal Highness the King at 1pm,” Mahathir’s office said in a statement.

Anwar was due to meet with the king at 0600 GMT. It was not clear if he had the political support to stake a claim on forming a government.

It was also not immediately clear what the king’s next step would be and whether Mahathir could form another government with the support of other parties, including UMNO.