back to article Malaysian blogger 'detained' for two years

A Malaysian blogger has been detained without trial for two years on charges of "insulting Islam and inciting racial tensions", the BBC reports. Raja Petra Kamarudin was cuffed on 12 September after he unwisely used a piece in the Malaysia Today accuse Malaysia's deputy prime minister, Najib Razak, of involvement in …


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  1. Jamie Kitson
    Thumb Down

    Facts And Figures

    He has not been detained for 2 years, he is being held on an act which allows him to be detained for up to 2 years without charge.

    I was further confused by the 12 December date, he was actually detained on 12 September according to your source, the BBC.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Interesting. If we could detain all bloggers for 2 years then the interweb would be a much nicer place to visit.......

  3. adnim

    Don't give them ideas

    "The country's home minister ordered him to be sent to a detention centre in the state of Perak under the Internal Security Act (ISA), which allows him to be held for 24 months, although the sentence can be renewed indefinitely. The detention order can be overturned only by the minister, not a judge, the BBC notes."

    I can see Jacqui Smith reading about this news story and thinking how wonderfully beneficial an Internal Security Act mirrored on that of Malaysia would be if implemented here in the UK.

    Scary stuff.

  4. Master Baker
    Paris Hilton

    Tip of the (melting) ice burg

    A number of Islamic countries have accosted the UN to make it illegal for anyone to insult or criticise Islam. Remember the governments 'Religious Hate' law which got overturned by a single vote? Some thing, different country.

    They're all a bunch of feckers (hence Paris)

  5. Samsara
    Thumb Down


    But we're always being told that Islam is such a peaceful loving religion by the Guardian.

    I'm confused ?

  6. The Fuzzy Wotnot
    Thumb Up


    I love the fact that all religions state that they preach "tolerance", which they most likely did before the fundamentalist nutters got hold of them. Yes, we believe in tolerance, so long as you don't offend me or my religion in anyway I deem to be offensive!

  7. Fluffykins


    A religion or Deity must be pretty weak if it needs cops to lock up anyone who criticises it.

    Even my (Pretty good) boss copes with criticism better than that and, depite what he tries to maintain, he ain't even remotely omnipotent.

    Anonymous - well work it out.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Notice they never prosecute

    Islamic terrorists for insulting Islam even though their entire philosophy is an insult to Islam?

  9. Mike Bell

    Islam Alert

    Just out of interest, how is it even possible to "insult Islam"?

    Islam is an idea.

    You can't insult an idea.

    Therefore you can't insult Islam.

    Any more than you can insult relativity or prime numbers.


  10. Geoff Kennedy

    @Islam Alert

    I dunno.. I always though 7 was a pretty cheeky bastard...

  11. Clarissa

    And meanwhile over here...

    ... our Brussels based overlords are preparing to clamp down on bloggers themselves. The thin edge of the wedge me thinks?

  12. Mountford D

    Re: Don't give them ideas

    No need. We introduced them originally.

    Being one of our ex-colonies, we introduced British Law to the land in the not-so-distant past to which the Malaysians have simply continued on the model. Draconian laws like detention without trial and wholesale re-population of natural settlements into "New Villages" were in widespread use during the 1950s-1960 Emergency. Not surprisingly therefore that the current administration can and will introduce laws updated to be applicable in the 21st century based on the successful British model of the past.

    A particularly interesting aspect of ex-colonialism is that we introduced the capital punishment of hanging and the Malaysians still carry this out in accordance with the procedure laid out by the British.

    Let's hope Jacqui Smith doesn't decide to open her history books.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    It's not about Islam

    I write from Malaysia (hence AC, natch).

    This has got absolutely nothing to do with "insulting Islam".

    Six months or so ago, the ruling coalition in Malaysia suffered a big smack in the face in a general election, although not big enough to lose its majority. Bloggers, and a new sense of freedom of speech, were largely responsible for people having the confidence to vote not for the Opposition parties, but against the status quo.

    Since then, the former deputy PM, Anwar Ibrahim (who, IMHO, is just as much a knut as Najib) has had his suspension from political activity expired (following a sodomy conviction in 1998), and won a bye-election campaign (caused by his wife's resignation) on the platform of taking enough MPs from the ruling coalition to win a no confidence vote.

    During that campaign, a prominent Malay politician described the Malaysian Chinese as "squatters" and "immigrants". That went down like David Irving at a Guardian-readers' conference, to put it mildly, and the government's response to what was in most people's opinion a flagrant breach of the spirit of the Constitution, was perceived as, at best, cowardly and pissant, and pandering to Malay supremacists at worst, and was called as such by prominent commentators, leading to the original arrests.

    Raja Petra, Teresa Kok (no sniggering at the back), et al, have been vehement in their criticism of the government's use of the ISA to silence legitimate dissent, both of which have escalated since the deadline of September 16th, which Anwar had set for the crossover of MPs. Indeed, even the law and order minister, Dato' Zaid Ibrahim, resigned from government in disgust at the use of the ISA for these purposes. Teresa Kok today had her suit of habeas corpus thrown out in court on the grounds of (I paraphrase) "well, you're out now, what are you complaining about?"

    So to conclude, this has nothing to do with "insulting Islam", and everything to do with propping up a government that has totally lost face and faith with the electorate.

    Black Helicopters, cos, well, ain't it obvious?

  14. moronatwork
    Thumb Down

    Oh, it gets even better.

    Read his comment at his website:


    "You've insulted Islam, a jailable offence. Even though we

    cannot prove that in the articles that we've printed out. But

    your style of writing is too sophisticated, and dumb people who

    are not at the same intellectual level as you could misinterpret

    what you say, and mistakenly think what you wrote as an insult

    to Islam. Hence, we are going to send you to jail for insulting


  15. Teoh Han Hui

    ISA nonsense


    Speaking on the one-day arrest of Sin Chew Daily reporter Tan Hoon Cheng, who was arrested under the ISA, he said Tan was detained under Section 73(1) of the Act in order to ensure her safety.

    He added that police intelligence indicated that there were threats to her life after she reported on Bukit Bendera division Umno chairman Datuk Ahmad Ismail’s allegedly racist remarks.

    “We have no intention of holding a reporter as after all she was just taking notes of the comments made by a certain party that led to a public debate."


    Malaysia Today editor Raja Petra Kamarudin was served with an order Monday night that would see him detained in Kamunting for two years under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

    Raja Petra will be held without trial under Section 8(1) of the ISA, reporters were told by his lawyers, who were at the High Court hear to argue their habeas corpus application on Tuesday. The detention order was signed by Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar on Monday night.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    RE: Don't give them ideas

    > I can see Jacqui Smith reading about this news story and thinking how wonderfully beneficial

    > an Internal Security Act mirrored on that of Malaysia would be if implemented here in the UK.

    Eh, who introduced ISA to Malaysia in the first place?

    "The Emergency Regulations Ordinance 1948 was made, following the proclamation of an emergency, by the British High Commissioner Sir Edward Gent"

    Ironically, the British also introduced identity cards to Malaysia, and yet they don't have ID cards in the UK...

    Black helicopter, because I'm sure they're out to get me

  17. Patrick Ernst
    Thumb Down


    @Master Baker @Fluffykins @The Fuzzy Wotnot - Perhaps you lot ought to reread the article again. It's quite clear in it that "insulting Islam and inciting racial tensions" is being used as an excuse to jail the man. The act is purely political. Anonymous from Malaysia gives a good breakdown of the situation in @It's not about Islam. Is the US/UK et al any better with their detention without trial policies?

    An article like this always gives reactionaries their own opportunity to "insult Islam". Islam is perfectly robust enough to weather a great deal of insulting, some of which has been delivered using depleted uranium express post.


  18. stranger on the road
    Thumb Down

    Dubious charge of insulting Islam

    El Reg, where did the line "Dubious charge of insulting Islam" come from? The article is clearly talking about abuse of authority by some government officials. So why was "insulting Islam" added to the short comment?

    Or does the author of the article simply hate Islam?

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