The death of Malaysian icon Karpal Singh has reached the shores of Ulanbataar, Mongolia, where a two-page tribute was dedicated to him in a local daily yesterday.
The Mongolian-language Zuunii Medee or Century News carried two pages of an interview with Altantuya's dad Setev Shaariibuu who poured out his personal feelings about Karpal in an article headlined 'Malaysian opposition DAP leader Karpal Singh dies in car accident'.
Shaariibuu said he knew this "great man" who helped him in the murder trial of two former police officers suspected of having killed Altantuya with plastic explosives in October 2006.
Karpal diligently kept a watching brief for Shaariibuu since the case commenced in 2007 and had been faithfully keeping him updated of the progress of the case in Malaysia.
Shaariibuu said he send his deepest condolences to Karpal's family as the late lawyer was with hem when he was ‘in the worst situation of his life.
"When my daughter died eight years ago in Malaysia... I had no path to follow," he said in an email to Malaysiakini.
"At that moment, Karpal approached me himself. He felt that no one could help my daughter's case in Malaysia," he added.
"He was not only an advocate but a great human rights defender in Southeast Asia," he said.
Shaariibuu met Karpal for the last time in his Kuala Lumpur office on April 11, 2012, where he took photos with his lawyer and presented him with a Mongolian blanket to cover his knees.
"This blanket will be good for your knees. It will keep you warm," Shaariibuu told him while patting his knees.
His words were translated to Karpal by the Mongolian Foreign Ministry official who accompanied Shaariibuu on a three-day visit to Kuala Lumpur.
Malaysiakini was present during that visit.
Shaariibuu met Karpal then to speed up his RM100 million suit filed in 2007 against the government, political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda and the two former body guards of the Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak for the sufferings incurred by his family - including two of Altantuya's sons - as a result of her untimely death.
Shaariibuu expressed his concerns last year that his suit may no longer be valid as the two Special Action Unit members previously convicted of her murder by the Shah Alam High Court - Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar - were acquitted by the Court of Appeal in Aug 23 last year.
The Federal Court has fixed June 23 to 25 to hear the prosecution's appeal over the duo's acquittal, in which Karpal would have been present, keeping a watching brief for Shaariibuu.
His lawyer based in Ulanbataar, Munkhsaruul Mijiddorj, said Shariibuu requested her to send his condolences to Karpal's family.
"Many Mongolians are sad and grieve over his death," said Munkhsaruul, who had accompanied Shaariibuu on his trip to Kuala Lumpur to attend Altantuya's murder trial. -Malaysiakini