Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Liberty, Sedition & Jailed Dissidents in M'sia

The recent arrests of student activist Adam Adli, three other prominent opposition figures, and 18 people holding a peaceful candlelight vigil outside the Jinjang Police Detention Centre have understandably fuelled negative sentiments. Regardless of where we stand on the political spectrum, we all expect the space to voice our opinions and express dissent within a democratic framework. Personally, I do not agree with the authorities decision to arrest Adli and others, if anything, it only legitimises the accusations of Barisan Nasional’s opponents. At the same time, one must attempt to view this situation through the lenses of the government.

Whether we’d like to admit it or not, the authorities have been extremely soft on public gatherings, candlelight vigils, and opposition rallies held after the May 5 election. Rallies were met with no resistance; few if any security personnel were in attendance, and attendees were not infringed upon or prevented from exercising their freedom of expression. As far as I am aware, the police did not exercise force upon any rally-goer, nor did authorities block access to print or digital media that is favourable to the opposition prior to the recent arrests of Adli and others.

Read the full story on FMT.com

Nile Bowie is a Malaysia-based political analyst and a columnist with Russia Today. He also contributes to PressTV, Global Research, and CounterPunch. He can be reached at nilebowie@gmail.com.