Human Rights Day rally postponed in Malaysia after police warn of 'serious security risks'

KUALA LUMPUR: The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) announced on Friday (Dec 7) that it was postponing its rally planned for Saturday to celebrate International Human Rights Day. 

“The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) has informed Suhakam and the Prime Minister’s Office without divulging details that there will be serious security risks arising out of tomorrow’s events that borders on national security,” said Suhakam chairman Razali Ismail in a media statement. 

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The event, which was scheduled to take place at Padang Timur in Petaling Jaya, was to commemorate International Human Rights Day 2018, which falls on Dec 10. 

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahthir Mohamad had been due to attend the event. 

“Suhakam is disappointed that a government that is committed to human rights would seem to be influenced by tactics of pressure and extremism,” added Razali. The event had been planned a few months ago, he added. 

“We apologise profusely to the public, our guests, the participants and volunteers to our celebration.” 

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Another high-profile rally is taking placing on Saturday – in the capital Kuala Lumpur – with large crowds expected in attendance.

The anti-ICERD (International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination) rally will take place at Dataran Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur. This despite the Malaysian government’s announcement that it was no longer going to ratify ICERD. 

Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday issued a travel advisory urging Singaporeans to defer all non-essential travel to Malaysia’s capital city this weekend.  


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