KUALA LUMPUR–On May 9, Falun Gong practitioners in Malaysia submitted a memorandum to the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) regarding the violations of human rights by the authorities. Malaysian officials recently arrested and charged two Falun Gong practitioners for providing information at tourist spots about what Falun Gong is and how it is persecuted in China.
Falun Dafa Research Centre Berhad, an organization representing Falun Gong practitioners in Malaysia, asked SUHAKAM to investigate the arrests and charges, which the organization thinks is a suppression of fundamental human rights.
Muhammad Sha’ani, commissioner of SUHAKAM, accepted the memorandum from Raymond Ng, spokesperson for Falun Gong practitioners in Malaysia.
According to Raymond Ng, there are two charges against Falun Gong practitioners in Malaysia.
Mr. Wu Ruirong, a Falun Gong practitioner from China, was arrested by the police on July 13, 2011, when distributing Falun Gong leaflets in Merdeka Square. Wu was charged under section 353 of the Penal Code. This case is being contested in court.
The second case happened in Malacca on Feb. 15, 2012. Mr. Lin Tao, who is also from China, was arrested by the police when distributing Falun Gong leaflets at a tourist spot in Malacca. Lin was charged under section 4(1)(b) and 5(1) of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984. This case is also being contested in court.
According to Ng, the two recent arrests follow on previous harassment cases of Falun Gong practitioners’ activities at tourist sites. On April 10 last year, Falun Gong practitioners submitted a similar memorandum.
Ng said that in a few incidents last year some tourist guides in Merdeka Square violently interrupted practitioners in providing information. Some tourist guides snatched the banners and materials, and called police to interrupt the Falun Gong practitioners’ activities in Merdeka Square. Ng said the tourist guides who acted this way had basic misunderstandings about Falun Gong.
During the hearing, Muhammad of SUHAKAM said the local authorities should respect human rights.
“Such harassment [by the authorities] of Falun Gong are selective actions. There are many other similar promotion activities happening every day in this country but nobody is taking any action on them. Falun Gong is only distributing informative material and the authorities should not see this as an issue,
“It is everyone’s responsibility to call attention to such selective actions, which are against human rights. The authorities should be fair to Falun Gong,” said Muhammad.
“We will follow up the cases mentioned in the memorandum,” said Muhammad.
Muhammad also said he plans to have a dialogue with the travel industry leaders to share with them his views about universal human rights.
In the memorandum, Falun Gong practitioners said that their rights to freedom of association, expression, belief, and conscience have been seriously violated. Falun Gong practitioners asked SUHAKAM to:
“(I) Investigate the authorities violations of Falun Gong practitioners’ human rights and the legal charges brought against Falun Gong practitioners.
“(II) Write to advise the relevant authorities to allow Falun Gong practitioners to practice their fundamental human rights, such as the freedoms of speech, expression, and assembly, without interference.
“(III) Write to relevant authorities to explain their actions [for arresting and charging Falun Gong practitioners].”
The memorandum expressed the hope that the local authorities will not assist the Chinese Communist Party in persecuting Falun Gong.
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