Monday, October 27, 2014

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.



Press Statement by M Kula, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 27th October, 2014

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.

Today is the 27th anniversary of the infamous Operasi Lalang. On October 27, 1987, more than 100 persons comprising politicians, educationists, activists, intellectuals were detained under the draconian Internal Security Act. 

It was a day of darkness in Malaysian history. 

It was also the worst abuse of the Act and the crackdown also saw the  he revoking of the publishing licenses of two dailies, The Star and Sin Chew Jit Poh and two weeklies, The Sunday Star and the Watan.

Today, Tun Mahathir who was responsible for the crackdown has long retired but the government still owes those detained an apology.

Datuk Seri Najib has started his premiership six years ago with talk of 1 Malaysia and moderation concepts as well as promises of political reforms, but what we see today is not what he has promised.

Despite his talk about 1 Malaysia concept and the value of moderation, he is not able to walk his talk and has remained silent when extremists continue to play with racial and religious fires.

Although the draconian Internal Security Act has been repealed, a new political crack down in the form of sedition blitz against government critics has taken place. 

Najib has promised to repeal the 1948 Sedition Act in 2012 but till today, he has yet to fulfil his pledge. Worse, the Act has become the new weapon to stifle political dissent and silence government critics. 

Many opposition lawmakers have faced court prosecution, yet Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali who has threatened to burn the Bibles has not been charged. 

De facto Minister Nancy Sukri’s explanation that Ibrahim was merely defending Islam met with strong and massive criticism, yet the Prime Minister has remained silent. .

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution  of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.

I wish to remind Najib that the public do not have short memories and still remember his 2012 challenge to the opposition. 

In 2012, when commenting on the Bersih 3.0 sit in protest which attracted 200, 000 participants, Najib had said:-

“To these people, I challenge them to fight' at the ballot box. If you are anak jantan (man), let us fight there."

So I wish to challenge the Prime Minister to stop the political persecution of opposition lawmakers and fight the opposition fair and square at the next general election.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Call on IGP Tan Sri Khalid to support the immediate setting up of IPCMC



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 25th October, 2014

Call on IGP Tan Sri Khalid to support the immediate setting up of IPCMC

Despite the continued occurrences of custodial deaths, the federal government’scontinued refusal to set up the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) recommended by the Royal Commission of Inquiry headed by Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah, is most disappointing and even irresponsible.

The main excuse given by the government is that the setting up of the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) is sufficient.

But time has proven that EAIC has failed to stop more custodial deaths from happening since it was set up in 2011.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) in its “ No Answers, No Apology: Police Abuses and Accountability“ report released  in April this year in Kuala Lumpur revealed that just 7% of complaints against the police force between 2005 and 2012 reached a courtroom while more than half the cases has yet to be fully investigated.

From extrajudicial killings of teenagers to custodial deaths, threats to lawyers and assaults on journalists covering demonstrations, the report gives chilling and bloody first-person accounts of police abuse and misconduct.

The report without a doubt further showed the urgency of setting up an external oversight body like IPCMC.

But the government is still adamant in refusing to set up the IPCMC when such oversight body has been set up in many other countries.

It is no secret that the Police leadership has always been opposing the setting up of the IPCMC.

Yesterday, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said that the police were not in favour of the setting up of IPCMC last year because the terms in the proposal treated the force like second-class citizens.  

He said the proposal gave members of the force no avenue for justice.
“For instance, in the proposal, a policeman picked up for corruption does not have the right to defend himself,” he was quoted as saying.

Was Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar saying that the police will support IPCMC formation if the required changes are made?

On June 29 last year, former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan called on the government to set up IPCMC after the Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar was ruled responsible for A Kugan’s death under custody.

In a landmark civil suit, the High Court had ruled that Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, at that time the Selangor police chief, was liable to misfeasance in A. Kugan’s death behind bars in 2009. 

“You need monitoring, of course, on the police,” Musa told The Malay Mail Online. He also proposed that changes be made to allow appeal against IPCMC decisions.

What Tan Sri Kahlid Bakar said yesterday was no different from what Tan Sri Musa said more than a year.

I wonder why it took Khalid Bakar more than a year to state his position.

Nevertheless, since Tan Sri Khalid Bakar has stated his position, I call on him to propose the necessary changes to the government and to express his full support for the immediate setting up of the long delayed IPCMC.

There need to be independent investigative body to look into complaints of wrong doings by the police. By establishing this like IPCMC it will enhance the confidence on the police and their investigations.

The bottom line is the police cannot and should not be given the exclusive monopoly of investigating their own wrongs. The police should not be judge, jury and prosecutor of complaints and wrong doings against its own personnel.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Eelam struggle receives major boost













Opinion



Eelam struggle receives major
boost

23-Oct-2014
By Paul Newman







Posted 18 Oct 2014
In a significant development
in the Eelam liberation movement, the European Court of Justice, the
highest court in the European Union (EU) has annulled the restrictive
measures against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).



It vindicates the belief that the Eelam Tamils will receive justice from
the international community based on the merits of their case for
recognition of their liberation struggle.



It was only after the
terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center (WTC) in 2001 and the
pressures adopted by the Congress led Indian government that the world
was fed with a totally distorted view of the Tamil Eelam struggle.



In December 2001, in the aftermath of the WTC attack, the EU imposed
specific restrictive measures directed against certain persons and
entities with a view to combating terrorist organizations.



On 29 May 2006, the European Council took the decision to freeze the
funds of the LTTE.



In contesting the Council’s decision, the LTTE demonstrated to the world
its faith in democratic processes.



The LTTE sought to establish its credentials as a liberation movement,
and stated that it “was involved in armed conflict against the armed
forces of the Government of Sri-Lanka, seeking self-determination for the
Tamil people and their ‘liberation from the oppression’ of that
government.



“Given the way in which the LTTE’s armed forces were organised and their
manner of conducting operations, the members of those forces meet all the
requirements laid down by international law for recognition as
‘combatants’.



“That status gave them immunity in respect of acts of war that were
lawful under the terms of the law on armed conflict and meant that, in
the case of unlawful acts, the LTTE would be subject only to that law,
and not to any anti-terrorism legislation.



“Since legitimate acts of war cannot be categorised as unlawful under
national law, they fall outside the scope of Common Position 2001/931,
which, as provided under Article 1(3) thereof, does not apply to acts
which are not offences under national law”.




EU lawyers heavily depended on the Indian government’s ban of the LTTE as
a precedent conveniently forgetting that the ban on LTTE in India had a
lot of politics behind it.



The LTTE lawyers rightfully argued that “the Indian authorities cannot
be regarded as a reliable source of information since they have adopted a
‘biased position’ in the conflict between the LTTE and the Government of
Sri-Lanka.”




Recently the Government of Tamil Nadu withdrew its case against MDMK
leader Vaiko, who had been charged under the draconian Prevention of Terrorism
Act for being a vocal supporter of the LTTE.



The LTTE was banned in India in the background of the killing of former
Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, which is an unresolved mystery. The LTTE had
not accepted responsibility for his killing.



A recent book titled 'Assassination of Rajiv Gandhi: An Inside Job?' by a
senior journalist Faraz Ahmad has thrown many questions on the killing of
Rajiv and even hints that it could have been a contract job. Hence, there
is no certainty over who the killers of Rajiv were.

The EU Court observed that “the
placing of the LTTE on the list relating to frozen funds constitutes an
infringement of the principle of non-interference under international
humanitarian law and the Council was wrong to apply to the LTTE the provisions
of EU law on terrorism.”




This verdict will have a positive impact in countries like Malaysia and
Australia. In the recent past Malaysia has been deporting Tamil refugees
on the ground that they have links with the LTTE.



Malaysian Member of Parliament
M Kulasegaran, a well known lawyer, who has represented Malaysian
Parliament at the International Criminal Court, and has been trying to
push Malaysia to ratify the Rome Statue, told this writer, “This verdict
will go a long way in the protection of the Eelam Tamils who many times
are branded as Tamil terrorists around the world as a result of the
negative campaign of Government of Sri Lanka.



“This will also help Tamil asylum seekers favorably. There is also a
possibility of states looking at the Tamil problem empathetically. It is
a snub on the arrogant ruling regime in Sri Lanka which has branded all
Tamils as terrorists. Hope this verdict will help in ending the miseries
of the Tamils”.



For obvious reasons, the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) is jittery at the
turn of events. The GoSL has expressed disappointment at the verdict and
says it would give more evidence to the EU to reconsider the case.



But it should know that the times have changed and the UN has already
initiated an inquiry into the allegations of War Crimes against it. It
would do well to save its own President from the grave charges against
his regime.



This verdict is also a lesson to the pro LTTE groups in Tamil Nadu to
hire eminent legal luminaries who can argue the case on merit rather than
on emotions as has been done so far.



This would go a long way in liberating the Eelam Tamils from the clutches
of the brutal Sri Lankan Sinhala regime.



Dr. Paul Newman holds a Doctorate of Philosophy on ‘Internal
Displacement and Human Rights situation in Northern Sri Lanka from
Bangalore University. He was one of the four public speakers at the
Permanent People’s Tribunal on War Crimes against Sri Lanka


- See more at:
http://www.theweekendleader.com/Opinion/3166/eelam-struggle-receives-major-boost.html#sthash.QPFUBbcF.dpuf

Monday, October 20, 2014

Eelam struggle receives major boost



Vol 5 Issue 42, Oct 17 - 23, 2014 theweekendleader




Opinion


Eelam struggle receives major boost
20-Oct-2014 By Paul Newman



Posted 18 Oct 2014
In a significant development in the Eelam liberation movement, the European Court of Justice, the highest court in the European Union (EU) has annulled the restrictive measures against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

It vindicates the belief that the Eelam Tamils will receive justice from the international community based on the merits of their case for recognition of their liberation struggle.
It was only after the terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center (WTC) in 2001 and the pressures adopted by the Congress led Indian government that the world was fed with a totally distorted view of the Tamil Eelam struggle.

In December 2001, in the aftermath of the WTC attack, the EU imposed specific restrictive measures directed against certain persons and entities with a view to combating terrorist organizations.

On 29 May 2006, the European Council took the decision to freeze the funds of the LTTE.

In contesting the Council’s decision, the LTTE demonstrated to the world its faith in democratic processes.

The LTTE sought to establish its credentials as a liberation movement, and stated that it “was involved in armed conflict against the armed forces of the Government of Sri-Lanka, seeking self-determination for the Tamil people and their ‘liberation from the oppression’ of that government.

“Given the way in which the LTTE’s armed forces were organised and their manner of conducting operations, the members of those forces meet all the requirements laid down by international law for recognition as ‘combatants’.

“That status gave them immunity in respect of acts of war that were lawful under the terms of the law on armed conflict and meant that, in the case of unlawful acts, the LTTE would be subject only to that law, and not to any anti-terrorism legislation.

“Since legitimate acts of war cannot be categorised as unlawful under national law, they fall outside the scope of Common Position 2001/931, which, as provided under Article 1(3) thereof, does not apply to acts which are not offences under national law”.


EU lawyers heavily depended on the Indian government’s ban of the LTTE as a precedent conveniently forgetting that the ban on LTTE in India had a lot of politics behind it.

The LTTE lawyers rightfully argued that “the Indian authorities cannot be regarded as a reliable source of information since they have adopted a ‘biased position’ in the conflict between the LTTE and the Government of Sri-Lanka.”

Recently the Government of Tamil Nadu withdrew its case against MDMK leader Vaiko, who had been charged under the draconian Prevention of Terrorism Act for being a vocal supporter of the LTTE.

The LTTE was banned in India in the background of the killing of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, which is an unresolved mystery. The LTTE had not accepted responsibility for his killing.

A recent book titled 'Assassination of Rajiv Gandhi: An Inside Job?' by a senior journalist Faraz Ahmad has thrown many questions on the killing of Rajiv and even hints that it could have been a contract job. Hence, there is no certainty over who the killers of Rajiv were.

The EU Court observed that “the placing of the LTTE on the list relating to frozen funds constitutes an infringement of the principle of non-interference under international humanitarian law and the Council was wrong to apply to the LTTE the provisions of EU law on terrorism.”

This verdict will have a positive impact in countries like Malaysia and Australia. In the recent past Malaysia has been deporting Tamil refugees on the ground that they have links with the LTTE.

Malaysian Member of Parliament M Kulasegaran, a well known lawyer, who has represented Malaysian Parliament at the International Criminal Court, and has been trying to push Malaysia to ratify the Rome Statue, told this writer, “This verdict will go a long way in the protection of the Eelam Tamils who many times are branded as Tamil terrorists around the world as a result of the negative campaign of Government of Sri Lanka.

“This will also help Tamil asylum seekers favorably. There is also a possibility of states looking at the Tamil problem empathetically. It is a snub on the arrogant ruling regime in Sri Lanka which has branded all Tamils as terrorists. Hope this verdict will help in ending the miseries of the Tamils”.

For obvious reasons, the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) is jittery at the turn of events. The GoSL has expressed disappointment at the verdict and says it would give more evidence to the EU to reconsider the case.

But it should know that the times have changed and the UN has already initiated an inquiry into the allegations of War Crimes against it. It would do well to save its own President from the grave charges against his regime.

This verdict is also a lesson to the pro LTTE groups in Tamil Nadu to hire eminent legal luminaries who can argue the case on merit rather than on emotions as has been done so far.

This would go a long way in liberating the Eelam Tamils from the clutches of the brutal Sri Lankan Sinhala regime.

Dr. Paul Newman holds a Doctorate of Philosophy on ‘Internal Displacement and Human Rights situation in Northern Sri Lanka from Bangalore University. He was one of the four public speakers at the Permanent People’s Tribunal on War Crimes against Sri Lanka


- See more at: http://www.theweekendleader.com/Opinion/3166/eelam-struggle-receives-major-boost.html#sthash.mGAQBwbZ.dpuf