Friday, March 29, 2019

Condemn Christchurch mosque shootings - Malaysians' full right to PEACEFUL Assembly long overdue?

On 23/3/2019(Sunday), Malaysians exercised their right to peaceful assembly in response to the mass killing of about 50 Muslims attending Friday prayers at 2 mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand on 15/3/2019(Friday), about 8 days before. The protest was attended by Malaysians from different ethnic and religious backgrounds. 

If the draconian Peaceful Assembly Act was to be followed, which required the giving of a 10-day notice, was to be followed, then we could only protest maybe 1 week later...absurd, is it not? People should have the right to exercise their right to Peaceful Assembly as soon as possible...without any such 'notice' or the requirement for any application for 'permits'...

The police said today it will allow tomorrow’s Peace, Solidarity Rally in Kuala Lumpur, despite not meeting the 10-day notice requirement.

It certainly is wrong if the Police has the power to decide whether we can exercise our right of peaceful assembly or NOT - where and when and HOW? For the International Women's Day march, they are being investigated for amongst others 'not giving the 10-day notice' but in the recent rally, the all-powerful police says no problem if the required notice not given? Does it depend on who the organisers are...or what the issue is?

SPEEDY RESPONSE is needed by the people for most issues - and most time, there may even be no 'organisers' just word moving around that people will be gathering at this time and place to protest this and that ...

Many Malaysians would have wanted to come out fast to express anger at about the mass killing of Muslims in a Mosque ...but this draconian Freedom of Assembly Act makes it impossible...

Many also would have wanted to maybe protest in front of the US Embassy the pronouncement by US that it recognizes that it recognizes Israel's sovereignty with regard to Golan Heights, the Syrian territory illegally occupied by Israel after the war, is now Israel's - it goes against UN Resolutions that have always being urging Israeel to return Golan Height to Syria... UN member states, including current members of the UN Security Council, and even Malaysia has spoken out against this US actions. Many in Malaysia would have also wanted to have their voices heard - which could have happeneded maybe at a lunch time protest in front of the US embassy or elsewhere maybe during the wrong long lunch break this Friday or over the weekend...but alas our draconian laws on Freedom of Assembly does not allow this...

Likewise, next week Parliament may table a Bill that many may be not be happy about. Media chooses which media statement to report - so the real way how many can be heard is through a peaceful assembly held quickly to show government that many are unhappy...or maybe even happy with all that is being proposed(or just some). Remember a peaceful assembly is also meant to lobby more people to support a view and position, just like worker pickets..

The ability to do these speedily is very important, as we have seen how in the past BN government, Bills can be rushed through and passed speedily within a few days - and any peaceful assembly after 10-days really is ineffective and meaningless...

POLICE should only be responsible to ensure that peaceful assemblies are conducted peacefully...They will ensure that others will not disrupt this, if there are opposing groups, then the police will make sure that they are kept apart..and both will be free to express themselves...

If someone in any of groups utilizing their right to peaceful assembly breaks the starts throwing stones damaging property, then police may immediately arrest such individuals...that is all...We all know that there maybe 'rogue elements' who may simply join peaceful assemblies to disrupt this right of the people. Blame should never be on organizers..or other protesters who peacefully demonstrate...

As mentioned, there may really be no single organiser - sometimes people come together to protest because they heard that there would be a peaceful assembly protesting a particular issue...

Take for instance, the 1998 REFORMASI protests that happened on several Saturdays along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, involving thousands - there were no organisers - people heard about it and just turned up and joined the protest...and some came to support from the sidelines...

To require a specific organiser to identify themselves in advance really maybe simply denying the denying the right of peaceful assembly in Malaysia. To date, we still have no idea who were the organisers of the REFORMASI protests...

So, Malaysia should speedily repeal the Peaceful Assembly Act and ensure that we in Malaysia enjoy the right to PEACEFUL assembly...Police or government must have no right to approve or disapprove the exercising of this right...Pending abolition, there must a moratorium on the use of this Act, and all other draconian laws that PH said would be repealed...

In Malaysia, many march at #Solidarity4Peace rally to condemn Christchurch mosque shootings

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa, and other religious leaders march to Dataran Mardeka during the Solidarity 4 Peace Rally in Kuala Lumpur March 23, 2019. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa, and other religious leaders march to Dataran Mardeka during the Solidarity 4 Peace Rally in Kuala Lumpur March 23, 2019. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
KUALA LUMPUR, March 23 — Ministers, MPs and religious leaders of all faiths came together in support of peace, following the Christchurch mosque shootings in New Zealand last week.

Organised by the Prime Minister’s Department and the Department of National Unity and Integrity, the #Solidarity4Peace began in front of the SOGO Shopping Centre at Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, from 7am onwards.

A crowd of 500 gathered, calling out slogans including ‘Reject Extremism’ and ‘Love Peace’, before heading to Dataran Merdeka at 7.35am.

By the time they reached Dataran Merdeka, the crowd had swelled to almost 1,000. Parents with their little children could be seen, as well as others from all walks of life.

Many held up placards, mostly in Bahasa but also in other languages, saying ‘Respect’, ‘World Without Terrorism’, ‘Peace, No Wars’, ‘Reject Hatred’, ‘Reject Racism’, among others.

As the leaders of the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism spoke and appealed to the audience to always uphold peace and harmony in the country, three helicopters flew above the Dataran bearing three flags, with the Jalur Gemilang at the forefront.

Several political leaders also spoke, including Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh, Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok, and Federal Territories Minister Khalid Abdul Samad, who called upon the crowd to not let Muslims become spreaders of hate in response to the shootings.

“Let Malaysia be a beacon of peace and harmony. He (the shooter) wanted us to war against one another, let us deny him this,” he said to loud applause.

National Unity Minister Senator P. Waytha Moorthy said the mosque shootings show how one incident can destroy peace in a country like New Zealand.

“We are all committed to the path of peace, all faiths teach us to love our fellow human beings. May it always prevail in our country,” he said.

The aunt of teenager Mohd Haziq Mohd Tarmizi who perished in one of the mosque shootings, Zarina Shuib, 53, also thanked the audience for supporting her family during this difficult time.

“We are greatly touched by everyone’s kindness towards us. Though this is a great test to bear by God, it shows that Malaysians all love peace and harmony,” she said tearfully.

New Zealand’s High Commissioner-Designate to Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam Hunter Nottage also spoke, occasionally breaking into Bahasa as he extended his condolences to the Malaysian people over this tragedy.

“This has been very moving for everyone, and is a time of great reflection for us.

“We were deeply saddened by this terrorist attack, and our thoughts are very much with the victims, who sadly included Malaysians,” he said.

Australian High Commissioner Andrew Goledzinowski spoke after Nottage, saying that the shooter Brenton Tarrant has ‘failed spectacularly’ in trying to spread terror and discord in society.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa said Malaysia chooses the path of peace, and will show it to the world.

“To New Zealand and its prime minister, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

“We are above and beyond those who hate among human beings. Our message is peace to everyone,” he said.
Ministers Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa (left) and P. Waytha Moorthy at the launch of the Solidarity4pPace rally in Kuala Lumpur March 23, 2019.
Ministers Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa (left) and P. Waytha Moorthy at the launch of the Solidarity4pPace rally in Kuala Lumpur March 23, 2019.
Mujahid also read out the KL Peace Declaration 2019, with affirmed five points.

“Condemning any discrimination, violence and killing in the name or religion or ethnicity, total rejection of acts and culture based on hatred.

“Supporting all efforts to foster peace and promote harmony among all religions and ethnicities, defending Malaysia’s sovereignty from being destroyed by agents of racial and religious hatred, and to be in solidarity with the world’s citizens to develop an environment of peace and prosperity,” he said. - Malay Mail, 23/3/2019

Police to allow Saturday’s peace gathering over Christchurch attack, but only in the AM

Syed Jaymal Zahiid
Malay Mail22 March 2019

KUALA LUMPUR, March 22 — The police said today it will allow tomorrow’s Peace, Solidarity Rally in Kuala Lumpur, despite not meeting the 10-day notice requirement.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun said organisers can proceed with the “peace rally” at Dataran Merdeka, but only from 7.30am to 11am.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa had proposed for the rally back on Monday, which was too short for the 10-day notice required under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012.

The rally is aimed at condemning last Friday’s shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand by an accused white supremacist. A Malaysian teenager was among the 50 killed. 

The minister is currently in New Zealand for an official visit, planned hours after Malaysian Muhammad Haziq Mohd Tarmizi, 17, was pronounced dead by New Zealand authorities early Thursday morning.

Muhammad Haziq was among the 50 people killed in the March 15 attack on the mosques by an alleged white supremacist gunman. Muhammad Haziq’s father, Mohd Tarmizi Shuib, 42, and two other Malaysians, Muhammad Nazril Hisham Omar and Rahimi Ahmad, were also injured in the massacre. 

Mujahid was there to personally thank the New Zealand government, which received worldwide praise for how it responded to the shooting.

Bernama reported that the minister met several Malaysians based in Christchurch and officials from Wellington. Accompanying him was the Malaysian High Commissioner to New Zealand, Nur Izzah Wong Mee Choo. 

Tomorrow’s rally is meant to bring people from all walks of life together in a show of solidarity with the victims of the massacre. - Malay Mail, 22/3/2019


Malaysia’s Mahathir dubs Israel ‘a state of robbers’

Malaysian premier says his country enjoys friendly relations with every country except for Israel

Aamir Latif   | 22.03.2019
Malaysia’s Mahathir dubs Israel ‘a state of robbers’ Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad

KARACHI, Pakistan 

Dubbing Israel as “a state of robbers”, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Friday said his country enjoys friendly relations with every country in the world except for Israel. 

“We are not against Jews but we cannot recognize Israel because of (its) occupation of Palestinian land,” Mahathir said in his remarks, aired by local broadcasters, during his three-day visit to Pakistan on Friday.

“You cannot seize others’ lands, and form a state. It’s like a state of robbers”, he went on to say.
His remarks came a day after U.S. President Donald Trump said it was time for the U.S. to recognize Israel's control of the occupied Golan Heights. 

Israel has long pushed Washington to recognize its claim over the territory it seized from Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War.

Israel occupies roughly two-thirds of the wider Golan Heights as a de facto result of the conflict. It moved to formally annex the territory in 1981 -- an action unanimously rejected at the time by the UN Security Council.... AA, 23/3/2019

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