Inspector-General of Police
Royal Malaysia Police Headquarters
50560 Kuala Lumpur
Tuesday, 3rd March
Subject: Appeal to immediately drop all investigations and intimidations against Fadiah Nadwa Fikri, Ambiga Sreenevasan and Marina Mahathir
To the Inspector-General of Police,
The Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) is a regional women’s rights organisation established in 1986, with over 200 members in 27 countries in Asia and the Pacific. We call on the Malaysian government to immediately drop all of their investigations and intimidation against Fadiah Nadwa Fikri, Ambiga Sreenevasan and Marina Mahathir. Fadiah Nadwa Fikri has been targeted for participating and speaking at a peaceful gathering on the situation of Malaysia’s political crisis last Tuesday 25 February 2020, along with other individuals and activists. While both Ambiga Sreenevasan and Marina Mahathir are being targeted for participating in another similar gathering held last Sunday 1 March 2020.
Fadiah and the four other individuals are being investigated under Malaysia’s archaic and draconian Sedition Act as well as the Communications and Multimedia Act. While the police have not yet specified the offences that both Ambiga and Marina are being investigated under. The investigation against Fadiah and the other individuals – one of the first to come since the current political crisis has unfolded – has since been followed by further police harassment and intimidations of other individuals who are expressing their views on social media or who have organised or participated in other peaceful gatherings. This is part of a worrying trend that Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs) are experiencing across the world, when authoritarian governments disregard its obligations to respect, protect and realise human rights and fundamental freedoms of all persons; but rather at the forefront of such violations to silence the dissents.
Malaysia has been urged by the United Nations (UN) human rights experts to withdraw its Sedition Act as it has used the Act to curb the legitimate exercise of freedom of expression over the past few decades. The use of the Sedition Act on ordinary Malaysians for the exercise of their human rights to freedom of opinion and expression is unwarranted and unacceptable; and is a direct violation to Malaysia’s human rights obligation as a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Article 19).
We are concerned that these intimidations and harassment signal a rapid regression of the peoples’ rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly in Malaysia. We urge the police to immediately cease its harassment and intimidation against Fadiah, Ambiga and Marina as well as all other individuals who are exercising their fundamental constitutional rights as citizens of Malaysia.
We look forward to an immediate, just and accountable action from your office. Should your office have any inquiries, please contact email@example.com.
Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD)
Special Select Committee on Human Right and Constitutional Affairs
Parliament of Malaysia
50680 Kuala Lumpur
℅ Charles Santiago (Chairman) firstname.lastname@example.org
Suruhanjaya Hak Asasi Manusia Malaysia (SUHAKAM)
Complaints and Monitoring Division (CMD)
11th Floor, Menara TH Perdana,
Jalan Sultan Ismail
Kuala Lumpur 50250
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
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