Kuala Lumpur: The playboy brother of the Sultan of Brunei has made two surprise appearances in the oil-rich nation in recent weeks, triggering speculation that a decade-long family feud is being resolved.
Prince Jefri Bolkiah, who has been embroiled in legal action over allegations that billions of dollars went missing during his time as finance minister, had reportedly not spoken to his older brother since 2004.
But his appearances in the sultanate, including a visit last week to a mosque along with other senior royals which was publicised in the Brunei press, has shed rare light on the wrangle.
"There`s a much more constructive relationship between the parties," confirmed Prince Jefri`s London-based lawyer David Sandy, who declined to elaborate.
"The discussions are continuing, I don`t want to disrupt those by making any assumptions on the process other than that," he said.
Sandy dismissed suggestions that Prince Jefri is mending fences because he has nowhere left to turn amid legal machinations which last year saw a British judge issue an arrest warrant after he failed to turn up at a court.
"I don`t think it`s an accurate reflection of the relationship between the parties," he said.
Jefri failed to show up at court to defend allegations he was in contempt for breaching the terms of an order requiring him to hand over USD 4.8 billion to the Brunei Investment Agency.