URGENT APPEAL: 7 PEOPLE ARRESTED IN DEMONSTRATION
UPDATE ON MALAYSIA

Issued: 4 August 2000, 3.20pm

Dear Friends,

There are 7 people arrested by the police during a demonstration to show support to the former deputy prime minister, Anwar Ibrahim, whose verdict on his sodomy trial was supposed to be handed down this morning, but was postponed until further notice by the judge yesterday. The demonstration proceeded this morning despite the postponement of Anwar's verdict as there were about 30 other opposition leaders and reformasi activists were also on trial in the magistrate court for allegedly involved in previous illegal assemblies.

The 7 people arrested are:

1. Gopala Krishnan (leader of National Justice Party)
2. Mona Sufian (former ISA detainee)
3. Munawar,
4. Zainab Rahmat (woman)
5. Nor Azinah binti Mohamad Noor (woman)
6. Rahimah (woman)
7. Lokman Adam (youth leader of National Justice Party)

So far, we are not sure of the official charges for their detention.

RECOMMENDED ACTION

SUARAM is very concern on the frequent abuse of power by the police against citizens who legitimately express their dissent.

We encourage you to write letter expressing support and solidarity to those individuals detained as well as the groups and organisations supporting them.

We encourage you to write appeal letters to the Attorney-General and the Home Minister, calling on him to release all detainees and drop any charges against them. The people were exercising their right to freedom of expression in a peaceful manner which does not involve any loss of lives, injury and/or damage of public property or individual's property. Please note that we are concern for the health and safety while under police custody.

We encourage you to request the Inspector-General of Police and the Home Minister to:
- stop persecuting the citizens for their peaceful protest against injustices perpetrated by the government
- respect the right of the people to freedom of assembly and expression as according to international human rights standards
- release all detainees immediately and unconditionally
- allow the detainees immediate access to lawyers and medical treatment

We encourage you to request the Chair of the Malaysian Human Rights Commission to:
- investigate the violations of human rights in the incidence
- urge the Malaysian government to respect the right of the people to peaceful expression and assembly
- urge the government to release immediately the detainees unconditionally
- continue to support Malaysian citizen's rights to freedom of assembly and expression


PLEASE SEND LETTERS TO:

1. The Home Minister of Malaysia

Datuk Abdullah Ahmad Badawi
Home Minister
Jalan Dato Onn,
50502, Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA
Fax : +603 2301051

2. The Chair of the Malaysian National Human Rights Commission

Ybhg. Tan Sri Musa Hitam
Chairperson
Malaysian National Human Rights Commission
c/- Kementerian Luar Negeri
Wisma Putra 50602
Kuala Lumpur
MALAYSIA
Fax: +603 2425043

3. Tan Sri Norian Mai
Inspector General of Police
Headquaters of Royal Police of Malaysia
Bukit Aman
50560 Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia
Fax: 603-22731326

AND
***Please remember to send a copy to SUARAM: <suaram@geocities.com>


Date Alert Released: 3.48pm, 4 August 2000


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Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
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