Smallholders account for 26%, or around 1.5 million hectares of oil palm planted area in Malaysia, the world's second-largest palm oil producer.
Muhyiddin Yassin faces up to 15 years in jail if found guilty on money laundering charge, and up to 20 years for abuse of power charge.
Muhyiddin, who led Malaysia from March 2020 until August 2021, will be the country's second leader after ex-Prime Minister Najib Razak to be indicted after leaving office.
A fifth fatality has been reported in Malaysia's Johor state as heavy rain and widespread floods hit the south of the country.
Malaysia is facing unprecedented continuous torrential rain from the annual monsoon season that began in November.
Malaysia's prime minister, who is visiting the Philippines, says new ways must be found to persuade Myanmar's military rulers to work with the ASEAN regional bloc to achieve peace.
Malaysian and Indian authorities have deployed search and rescue teams to work in southern Türkiye where more than 13 million people were directly affected by two strong earthquakes.
Bearing offerings such as milk pots and heavy ornate metal structures called kavadis, devotees walked barefoot up 272 steps to reach Batu Caves temple — an important religious site for local Hindus.
An estimated two billion people celebrate the Lunar New Year, which corresponds to the first new moon of the lunar calendar that occurs between late January to early February.
European leaders want to reduce deforestation by curbing the use of palm oil in the automotive sector. But the South East Asian nations say the restrictions are discriminatory.
A European proposal to tackle deforestation can end up hurting a key source of revenue for these Southeast Asian countries.
Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim met with Indonesian President Widodo where both leaders discussed border issues with Myanmar, trade and migrant worker rights.
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