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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

PKR sees Emergency in Putrajaya bid to stop Bersih

UPDATED @ 03:08:28 PM 29-06-2011
June 29, 2011
A police truck is parked outside the Bersih office in Petaling Jaya, during a raid on the premises, June 29, 2011. — Picture by Jack Ooi
PETALING JAYA, June 29 — PKR said today it expects the federal government to declare an Emergency in Kuala Lumpur as a last resort to stop the July 9 Bersih 2.0 public rally calling for electoral reforms.

Shuhaimi Shafiei, a member of PKR’s central leadership council, said the assessment was based on the move by the authorities in recent days to clamp down on plans for the rally through mass arrests of Bersih activists

“We expect them to use whatever means including declaring Emergency,” he told reporters at his party’s headquarters here today.

Shuhaimi, who is also PKR’s Selangor information chief, said he believed the recent police action pointed to plans by Putrajaya to declare Emergency.

“We are heading in that direction...this is a move by Putrajaya because they are scared of losing power.

“Nevertheless such actions will anger a public who are now aware of their rights,” he said.

The police have in hauled up a number of opposition leaders and Bersih activists for questioning in recent day.

Perkasa and Umno Youth leaders have also been questioned in relation to their plans to have Bersih counter-rallies.

On Sunday, the authorities arrested 30 activists from the Socialists Party of Malaysia including Sungai Siput MP Michael Jayakumar, on suspicion of “waging war on the King,” and suspected communist activities after finding T-shirts with images of former Communist Party leaders Chin Peng and Rashid Maidin.

“What has happened shows the terrible fears of those in Putrajaya.

“We are worried that democracy in this country could fall below that of Myanmar or to the standards of Egypt during Hosni Mubarak’s time,” Shuhaimi said.

He also compared police action in arresting those buying or selling Bersih T-shirts to that of the Israeli police in putting down dissent among Palestinians.

“Only iron-fist countries would enforce such ‘regulations.’”

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