Malaysian govt seizes opposition newspapers

Agence France-Presse - 2/11/2009 9:05 AM GMT

Malaysia’s government has seized thousands of copies of two opposition newspapers, in what party officials said Wednesday was a crackdown over a political standoff in a northern state.

They said that more than 20,000 copies of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s party newspaper “Suara Keadilan” had been confiscated, while the Islamic party PAS has had a large number of its paper “Harakah” seized from vendors and distributors.

“It’s a crackdown on the opposition. It is all an attempt by the government to try and intimidate the opposition and they have even harassed newspaper vendors who are distributing our papers,” Keadilan information chief Tian Chua told AFP.

Tian said the action against "Suara Keadilan, which has a weekly print run of 200,000, was in response to the three-party opposition alliance’s refusal to cede power in Perak state.

The Barisan Nasional coalition, which rules nationally, was sworn into power in Perak Tuesday despite objections from the opposition, which lost its narrow majority when it was hit with four defections.

The opposition’s chief minister Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin has rejected an order from the state’s sultan to quit and is running a parallel state government out of the official residence, which he has refused to vacate.

“We regret and oppose the confiscation of Harakah and Suara Keadilan by the home ministry and we believe they were acting on instructions from the top,” PAS information chief Mahfuz Omar told AFP.

“This is denying the people’s right to know the truth and forcing people to accept the one-sided news in the mainstream media, such as accusing Perak chief minister Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin of treachery,” he added.

However, the Home Ministry’s publications control unit secretary Che Din Yusof said the newspapers were confiscated because they had violated regulations.

“The parties have violated the guidelines which say that they are only allowed to circulate the papers at their party offices and the papers cannot be sold by news vendors,” he told AFP.

“The papers will continue to be confiscated if found to be sold by news vendors.”

Tian Chua rejected the explanation, saying opposition publications have been sold by news vendors for years without any problems.

MSN News

ban harold,now this???

now I wondering about the FREEDOM OF SPEECH which govt said before…hmmm…sounds fishy…

they too free nothing to do so always find thing to make problem…

anything what opposition try to say, G will ban it or tell people its a LIE!..but G is manipulating all media resources…newspapers, TV…everything…just like before the election last year…

ban harold?
y ban me?
oh, d newspaper…


welcome to democracy of republic communist of msia