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Archive for the category “ISA”

20,000 at anti-ISA rally – 01/08/09 Mkini SMS

1/8: Organisers call 20,000 anti-ISA crowd to disperse. At PAS HQ, Pakatan leaders at a press conference declared today’s rally a success/MKINI

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Anti-ISA Vigil 21 Charged : MalaysiaKini SMS 23/01/09

23/1: Anti-ISA vigil: 21 people, including a MP, 2 state reps and a priest, have been charged for illegal assembly in PJ magistrate’s court/MKINI

Dr Munawar Ahmad Anees

They wanted to fix details and asked me to choose a month. I could not because there had never been any homosexual relationship between me and Anwar. There was nothing for me to choose.” 
Dr Munawar Ahmad Anees, The Gestapos of Mahathir’s Empire
I was reading about Dr. Munawar Ahmad Anees’ experiences with the ISA in 1998. I am truly disturbed about the whole thing. Again, I want to express my disgust and now my fear about the brutal tactics of the ISA. 
After reading the 10 part article, I don’t think I will have the courage to endure the dehumanization that Dr. Munawar went through. I can only wish him to have inner peace after that humiliating incident. 
I have included the entire 10 part article’s links below. I admit that I haven’t yet finished reading Dr. Munawar’s recollections. Maybe I will once after I psyched myself up. 
Meanwhile, this is RPK’s 44th day at Kamunting.

Anti-ISA activists at PM open house

Anti-ISA activists at PM open house

Malaysia Kini 

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi came face to face with at least 40 activists calling for the repeal of the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the release of all detainees under the law.

A visibly amused Abdullah shook hands and greeted the activists at the Hari Raya open house in PWTC hosted by him and his cabinet ministers.

Abdullah was smiling throughout as he shook hands and exchanged small talk with the activists, as his jittery bodyguards looked on.

“He asked how I was and remembered we met in August,” said blogger and lawyer Haris Ibrahim.

“I replied by saying ‘Please, please, please, please, please abolish the ISA.”

Haris led a group of about 20 bloggers who wore T-shirts bearing ‘No to ISA’ and ‘Free RPK’ in reference to the two-year ISA detention of Raja Petra Kamaruddin.

These activists were soon followed by another bigger group from Hindraf – numbering some 200 and wearing bright orange T-shirts – who had wanted to deliver the same message to the premier.

However this second group’s effort was hindered by police who insisted that only a small number of them can be allowed to meet the prime minister up close. Subsequently about 20 of them met up with the premier.

Forgiveness

Led by K Shanti, the wife of Hindraf leader in exile P Waythamoorthy, the group handed Abdullah a teddy bear bouquet and a large Hari Raya card.

“I asked him when my husband could come back safely and he replied ‘so you are the chairperson’s wife’. He said that he would look into,” said Shanti.

Hindraf’s Hari Raya card however was badly torn after police tried to confiscate it at the entrance to PWTC. After a minor scuffle, the Hindraf activists managed to hang on to it.

“In the spirit of forgiveness during Aidilfitri celebrations, we wanted to express that the Indian Malaysians forgive him for sending Hindraf leaders to Kamunting,” added Shanti, when asked about the content of the card.

Both groups stressed that their activists did not eat any of the food offered during the event, which the government host annually, because their sole intention was to send a message to Abdullah.

ISA – Internet Sabotage Act

ISA – INTERNET SABOTAGE ACT

Malaysia Today
Malaysia has joined the ranks of China, Vietnam and Burma as a leading violator of online freedom. Blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin, also known as RPK, has been detained in Kuala Lumpur since 12 September because of the articles posted on his website. He is the 70th cyber-dissident to be imprisoned, according to the tally kept by Reporters Without Borders, an international organisation that defends press freedom. But he is the first cyber-dissident to be sentenced without trial to a long prison term.

Nazri Abdul Aziz, a minister with responsibility for justice, said as early as July 2007 that  government would not hesitate to use the Internal Security Act (ISA) against bloggers who broached overly sensitive subjects. Now it has happened. 

The editor of Malaysia Today, a leading website for those who want to follow the country’s politics, Raja Petra has been declared a “threat to the social order and national security” because of his support for the opposition and his scathing criticism of the ruling coalition. He was transferred to the Kamunting detention centre on 23 September on an order issued by interior minister Syed Hamid Albar under article 8 of the ISA. 

Issued without RPK’s family and lawyers being told, this ministerial order torpedoed a habeas corpus petition, the only recourse available to his lawyers, who had been unable to demonstrate the unconstitutionality of his detention. RPK had initially been held under article 73 of the ISA, which permits detention without trial for 60 days. Overnight, on a minister’s whim, he had found himself being held under article 8 of the ISA, which provides for detention without trial for up to two years. And the order can be renewed indefinitely. Earlier this year, RPK was charged with sedition and criminal defamation. Although his case has not yet been judged, he has already received a sentence of sorts through the ISA.  

Ever since he first began getting involved in Malaysian civil society, RPK has been harassed by the police and government, who have no qualms about violating the right to free speech although it is guaranteed by article 10 of the Malaysian constitution. He was arrested and imprisoned for 53 days under the ISA in 2001. Access to Malaysia Today, the website that he has been editing since 2004, was blocked by the country’s ISPs at the government’s behest on 26 August. Since his arrest on 12 September, RPK has been subjected to interrogation of a religious nature, in which doubt is cast on his faith in Islam. Religious freedom is nonetheless guaranteed by article 11 of the federal constitution. 

The Malaysian people have of late expressed their political will and their desire for a society in which the rule of law prevails, in which freedoms guaranteed by the constitution are respected by the government, without ethnic or religious distinction. Malaysian bloggers and independent media have a crucial role to play in this transition to democracy. The RPK case is one that concerns everyone because silencing a Malaysian citizen on account of his political or religious beliefs, whatever they are, means gagging an entire people. The ISA is a retrograde law, one worthy of an all-out dictatorship. Freeing Raja Petra means freeing the entire Malaysian people.

Reporters Without Borders

Anti-ISA activists at PM open house

Anti-ISA activists at PM open house

Malaysia Kini 

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi came face to face with at least 40 activists calling for the repeal of the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the release of all detainees under the law.

A visibly amused Abdullah shook hands and greeted the activists at the Hari Raya open house in PWTC hosted by him and his cabinet ministers.

Abdullah was smiling throughout as he shook hands and exchanged small talk with the activists, as his jittery bodyguards looked on.

“He asked how I was and remembered we met in August,” said blogger and lawyer Haris Ibrahim.

“I replied by saying ‘Please, please, please, please, please abolish the ISA.”

Haris led a group of about 20 bloggers who wore T-shirts bearing ‘No to ISA’ and ‘Free RPK’ in reference to the two-year ISA detention of Raja Petra Kamaruddin.

These activists were soon followed by another bigger group from Hindraf – numbering some 200 and wearing bright orange T-shirts – who had wanted to deliver the same message to the premier.

However this second group’s effort was hindered by police who insisted that only a small number of them can be allowed to meet the prime minister up close. Subsequently about 20 of them met up with the premier.

Forgiveness

Led by K Shanti, the wife of Hindraf leader in exile P Waythamoorthy, the group handed Abdullah a teddy bear bouquet and a large Hari Raya card.

“I asked him when my husband could come back safely and he replied ‘so you are the chairperson’s wife’. He said that he would look into,” said Shanti.

Hindraf’s Hari Raya card however was badly torn after police tried to confiscate it at the entrance to PWTC. After a minor scuffle, the Hindraf activists managed to hang on to it.

“In the spirit of forgiveness during Aidilfitri celebrations, we wanted to express that the Indian Malaysians forgive him for sending Hindraf leaders to Kamunting,” added Shanti, when asked about the content of the card.

Both groups stressed that their activists did not eat any of the food offered during the event, which the government host annually, because their sole intention was to send a message to Abdullah.

Kamunting Inside

No escape from this Malaysian Alcatraz
The Malaysian Insider

A Singaporean’s insight to the Kamunting detention camp
A blog in straitstime.com
SEPT 25 – In May 2004, I was among a group of some 30 journalists allowed into the dreaded Kamunting detention camp in remote Perak. Kamunting is a high-security prison where Internal Security Act (ISA) detainees – who can be imprisoned without trial – are often held. 

In Malaysia, the terms ISA and Kamunting go together. If you are arrested under the ISA, you are often first brought to Bukit Aman (ironically, Hill of Peace in Malay) headquarters of the federal police, or the Police Remand Centre for interrogation, and then onwards to Kamunting. 

The latest to hit the news with his transfer from Bukit Aman to Kamunting is blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin. He sadly joined the five leaders of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) who have been detained there since December last year.

That 2004 visit was the first, and only time since, that journalists were allowed into the camp to see its living conditions. It was part of Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi’s liberalisation policy – he had just won big-time in the March 2004 (yes, March 2004, not 2008) general elections and the government was full of confidence and promise. It had won 90 per cent of seats in Parliament – a record.

The visit was hosted by then-Deputy Home Minister Noh Omar who wanted to show journalists that the government had nothing to hide, despite the noise made then by the opposition, rights groups and families of the detainees that horrible things are happening inside.

I shivered as I looked around this Malaysian Alcatraz, with its trimmed lawns. This was a place where Clint Eastwood could escape from. The 114ha camp (about 140 football fields) had double security checks before anyone is allowed in or out. And if one could cut through one set of fence, there is another layer of fence to deal with.

Even if one could find wire cutters, and then be given the time to cut through the fences, there were all the dogs, lights and guards on watch towers to stop any escape attempt. Beyond the fences were just wide stretches of open fields. I don’t remember anyone ever escaping from the prison.

The place reminded me of the song Hotel California – you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave. Unless the government wants you to.

According to details published by rights group Aliran in Penang on Sept 19, the big camp has 64 detainees now. Raja Petra makes it 65. Except when they were put in solitary confinement, the detainees I saw were placed in single-storey barracks that they share with others.

There was no privacy, really, and there must have been worries among inmates about saying the wrong things to another person that could prolong one’s stay in the dreaded camp.

You see, although people like Raja Petra have been given a two-year sentence, the government after seeing recommendations from a review board, could in theory extend the incarceration for a very long time.

According to Penang-based rights non-governmental organisation Aliran, the longest prisoners now inside Kamunting – businessmen Yazid Sufaat and Suhaimi Mokhtar – have been there for nearly seven years.

Both were detained for alleged links to the Jemaah Islamiyah terror group since December 2001. In that camp in 2004, we were taken to meet two groups of people, separately, from two of the barracks. Noh’s aides had told the reporters – you are only observers.

“You can watch the deputy minister talk to the detainees, but if you try to talk to any of them, you would be thrown out right away. And please, do not tape any of the conversation.” We had to leave our tape recorders and mobile phones at the front counter.

Credit had to be given to Datuk Noh on that day, because although he was civil to the detainees, he was bombarded with questions on why they were still inside, their worries about their families, and their many claims of innocence.

A couple of the detainees cried spontaneously when talking about the plight of their families outside. Many of the inmates then were being detained due to alleged links to the JI, while others were alleged gangsters from the Borneo states.

One of the detainees, seeing the reporters, accused the deputy minister of using the visit to “seek political mileage”.

“Don’t use us as political tools and visit us as if we are animals in the zoo,” he said.

There were no famous faces inside then, except for Nik Abduh Nik Aziz, a son of the Parti Islam SeMalaysia spiritual leader, Nik Aziz Nik Mat. He was held due to alleged links with JI, and did not say anything at all. Nik Abduh has since been released.

As for Raja Petra, he is not the most famous person to have passed through those infamous gates. Those gates are the only ones that the public can see on a drive there, unless he or she is allowed inside to see a family member. And even inside, unlike the journalists in 2004, most family members are restricted to a meeting area.

In Malaysia, being jailed under the ISA has, rightly or wrongly, come be to taken as a badge of honour. It is as if the time spent under detention shows that ‘My struggle was so intense that to stop me, the government had to put me behind bars without trial’.

Among those who have been detained under the ISA are opposition veterans Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh, Parti Keadilan Rakyat chiefs Anwar Ibrahim and Azmin Ali, PAS vice president Mohamed Sabu, former deputy minister Ibrahim Ali, current defacto Islamic Affairs Minister Zahim Hamidi, rights campaigner Irene Xavier and academic Chandra Muzaffar.

The list is far from comprehensive as it includes lawyers, Chinese educationists, social activists and yet more politicians. A group of ex-inmates are fighting to get the ISA laws totally dropped. They are known by their Malay acronym GAM, or Gerakan Mansukan ISA (Abolish ISA Movement).

After the arrests of Raja Petra, opposition MP Teresa Kok and Sin Chew Daily journalist Tan Hoon Cheng, rights groups and NGOs have again banded together to the ISA repealed. It is not clear what will happen next, but most of those released from the camp were not cowed, but became fierce fighters against the security laws. – Reme Ahmad

"Iis like cushion y’know? Gurls like this…"

This is a cool movie to watch. This is Adam Sandler‘s best movie to me. 
I think the dude that is being mocked here will definitely be really, really upset when he finds out that The Zohan is actually an Israeli Mossad assassin… 

The Empire Strikes Back

So now, Raja Petra Kamarudin, will be held in Kamunting for 2 years. This is also subject to the government’s decision whether to release him on that time or simply extending his stay there.

So whatever RPK has ever forecasted , turned out to be mostly true. He did say, mere days before his detention, that he would soon be arrested and also would be held indefinitely for a very long time. Yesterday’s newspaper headlines confirmed all that. He was right. At both counts. Read ‘High-Stakes Poker Game Or Gunfight At The OK Coral?
However he also mentioned in the same article that he believes Anwar Ibrahim can actually take control of government. Heck, many of us believed that but sadly, it wasn’t meant to happened. Instead we get to watch Anwar creating headline after headline of which, is now sowing seeds of doubt and slowly distrust. RPK wrote in his pre-ISA posting (High-Stakes…), that if in the event September 16 doesn’t see Anwar taking power as the next Prime Miniser, his credibility will then be largely affected. In my own opinion,  Anwar Ibrahim, is at risk of being regarded a charlatan.
Yesterday was September 23rd. We were supposed to see Anwar and Pakatan Rakyat to already moving the vote for a motion of no confidence against the Barisan Nasional government. Read ‘Opposition Momentum Slows
I just received MalaysiaKini’s SMS just a few moments ago. Anwar’s sodomy case will be reconvening today.
What we are witnessing now is the BN government’s backlash against its opposition.
What is going to happen from now onwards?
I don’t know, we just have to wait and see then.
I’m out of popcorn. Anybody else want seconds?

Kamunting, It Is…


Raja Petra To Be Sent To Kamunting

MalaysiaKini

Malaysia Today editor Raja Petra Kamarudin will be sent to Kamunting Detention Centre in Taiping, Perak today to begin his two-year detention under the Internal Security Act, said his lawyer.

The home minister has signed his detention order last night to be held without trial under section 8 of the tough security law. Under the Act, the government can renew his detention indefinitely.

Lawyers said that the police had informed them this morning that they would be taking Raja Petra to the detention centre.

The Kuala Lumpur High Court is to hear a habeas corpus bid by Raja Petra’s lawyers to overturn the detention of the controversial blogger today.

Habeas corpus is a writ ordering prisoners to be brought before a judge to ascertain if there are any procedural defects which could render their detention unlawful.

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