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Police targeted media at Bersih – Suhakam

Thu 2013-Apr-18 @ +08 10:21:54 am

Human rights commission condemns bad faith by police, deliberate actions against media, failure to face inquiry

Wong Kin Onn was one of 14 journalists assaulted by police at Bersih. [Guang Ming photo]

Wong Kin Onn was one of 14 journalists assaulted by police at Bersih. Guang Ming photo

Extracts from Malaysiakini’s report on the Suhakam conclusions

Wong Onn Kin of Guang Ming Daily with a copy of petition to the Malaysian government demanding action for police brutality at Bersih

• The police force had acted in “bad faith” in its handling of the Bersih 3.0 rally on April 28 last year and took unreasonable and unjustifiable measures to control the crowd.

• Their actions show that there were deliberate efforts to stop media personnel from doing their jobs.

• Despite a host of police reports lodged against police personnel, the police had not completed investigation nor taken action into any one of these reports after almost a year.

• Police did not assist or facilitate the dispersal of Bersih participants, did not give them sufficient and reasonable time to disperse in an orderly and safe manner. Instead the police made the decision to disperse the crowd using water cannon and tear gas without conducting early arrests

• Police failed to send Suhakam a full list of officers on duty that day

• Police did not send any officer [to the Suhakam inquiry] who was able to respond to allegations of police brutality during the rally.

» Police ticked off for poor handling of Bersih 3.0 rally (Malaysiakini)

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One Comment
  1. Shadaan permalink
    Thu 2013-Apr-18 @ +08 10:51:15 am 10:51

    Media is an important source to shape public opinion and when the government in power controls the media due to dubious reasons and directs the police to act against the media leads to police misconduct. This refers to inappropriate actions taken by police officers in connection with their official duties. Police misconduct can lead to a miscarriage of justice and sometimes involves discrimination. The picture on this report where the media personnel is being abused using violence indicates police misconduct. A police officer enforces prevailing laws, attempts to prevent crime, and generally looks out for the health and safety of a community and not act like thugs for the ruling government. The press is a legal entity like the general public and handling the media with contempt is criminal. When police-media relations are effective, the legitimacy of policing is reinforced. When it is ineffective, the accountability of policing fails. The police are sworn to secrecy. The media is committed to uncovering information. Everyone knows the media could turn on the police at any time, to easily make them look bad. Yet, for the most part, the media tries to make the police look good.

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