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Malaysian premier questioned over unexplained millions in deposits

Malaysian anti-graft investigators have questioned Prime Minister Najib Razak over millions of dollars deposited onto his bank accounts. The money is alleged to come from Middle East donors.

In a statement issued on Saturday, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said Najib had cooperated fully with its officers during a two-and-a-half-hour meeting during which he was interviewed about 673 million dollars received on his bank accounts.

Najib has

faced calls to resign

and criticism from within his own party over his failure to explain fully where the money came from and the reasons why it was paid.

In July, the "Wall Street Journal" suggested in a report that the money had been misappropriated from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MHD). Najib denied the allegations but has not taken any legal action against the newspaper. The prime minister chairs the 1MDB advisory board.

1MDB is also under investigation by authorities

in Switzerland,

Hong Kong and the United States, according to media and other sources.

The MACC, which is under the prime minister's office, has said the money came from unnamed Middle East benefactors, but the motive for the alleged donations has not been revealed.

The Commission said it had also questioned Najib about corruption allegations at SRC International, a firm linked to 1MDB.

The anti-corruption body's statement said it would keep the public informed of developments in the probe.

tj/sms (Reuters, dpa)

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