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UN expert: Malaysia crackdown hurts democracy

UN expert: Malaysia crackdown hurts democracy

The U.N.'s independent expert on freedom of speech says democracy in Malaysia is being weakened through the use of tear gas and water cannons against peaceful protesters.
Frank La Rue said Monday the government acted in a "heavy-handed manner against peaceful demonstrators" by making mass arrests and unleashing tear gas against at least 20,000 demonstrators who marched for electoral reforms.
International rights groups and Malaysian opposition parties denounced the government's response to the country's largest political rally in four years, which resulted in the arrest of 1,667 people Saturday. All were freed without immediate charges by Sunday.
La Rue said in a statement that the government crackdown on a rally organized by civic groups backed by an opposition leader "risks undermining democratic progress in the country."


Updated : 2021-05-07 16:27 GMT+08:00