25 April, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 09/07/2004
MALAYSIA
Court to review Anwar's corruption conviction

Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews/AFP) – Anwar Ibrahim's full exoneration seems to be near. The Federal Court, Malaysia's highest court, agreed to review the former deputy prime minister's conviction on corruption charges for which he has already spent nearly six years in prison.

The judges will review their own 2002 decision to refuse Mr Anwar's appeal against the conviction. In their motion to the court, Anwar's lawyers argued that the accusations on which the conviction was made were "baseless" and that the trial was a "violation of fundamental legal principles". Last Thursday, the same Court had overturned Anwar's sodomy conviction and ordered his release.

Government lawyers opposed the ruling arguing that, as the highest court, the Federal Court's decisions should be final and not open to endless review. However, "[w]e have considered arguments and authorities," Federal Court judge Malek Ahmad said, "and we are of the unanimous view that we have the jurisdiction to hear the motion."

Following her father's release, Anwar's oldest daughter, Nurul Izzah, said: "It's not just a question of politics. [My father] has maintained his innocence from these charges all along."

Unless the corruption conviction is overturned, under Malaysian law Anwar is ineligible to lead a political party or stand for election until 2008. Should the Court reverse itself and overturn the conviction, he could run again.

In the meantime, Mr Anwar flew to Germany on Saturday for an operation to his spine, which he says was injured in a police beating after his arrest in 1998. The doctors who performed the two-hour operation said all went well without any complications.

In the second half of the 1990s, Mr Anwar was deputy prime minister and a supporter of reforms. He sought to modernise Malaysia whilst keeping close ties to Malaysia's Muslim population, including its more fundamentalist segments.

To this day, many Malaysian and foreign observers consider Anwar's convictions as a manoeuvre by then Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammed to remove a challenger from the political scene. Anwar is thus a victim of human rights abuse.

Yet, in spite of the general elation, not all voices are as sanguine about Anwar's reformist and liberal credentials. For Far East expert Philip Bowring Anwar's chequered past raises questions about his future role in the country.

"As finance minister, Anwar practiced the politics of patronage [. . .] creating new business groupings linked to his UMNO (United Malays National Organization) party." Browning further writes that "as deputy prime minister he faithfully defended the use of detention without trial under the Internal Security Act." Furthermore, "his charisma and eloquence [. . .] obscured his willingness to use religion and a pious face more effectively than any Malay politician."

What route will Anwar take if he makes a political comeback? Bowring wonders. Will he truly fight for the reforms and human rights which he now stands for? Time will tell. (MA)


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
09/03/2004 MALAYSIA
A free Anwar still calls for reforms
09/02/2004 MALAYSIA
Anwar Ibrahim set free
06/30/2008 MALAYSIA
Anwar Ibrahim, accused of sodomy, fears for his life and political career
09/15/2004 MALAYSIA
Federal Court dismisses Anwar's corruption appeal
09/30/2005 MYANMAR
More than 1,110 political prisoners in Myanmar

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope remembers and prays for "latest tragedy" of migrants, "our brothers and sisters" who "are seeking happiness"At the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis says he is praying for the hundreds of victims in a sinking off the coast of Libya. An appeal to the international community to "act decisively and promptly." "Every baptized person is called to witness in word and deed, that Jesus is risen, He is alive and present in our midst." The Christian message "is not a theory, an ideology or a complex system of precepts and prohibitions, or moralism, but a message of salvation, a concrete event, even a person: the Risen Christ, the living and only Savior of all" . The Pope will be in Turin on June 21 to honor the Shroud, the exposition of which begins today.
SAUDI ARABIA – YEMEN
Saudi war in Yemen masks widening domestic tensions
by Afshin ShahiSaudi Arabia is using the conflict in Yemen to control domestic problems, especially social inequalities and religious sectarianism. However, whilst the royal family flaunts its wealth, some 20 per cent of the population lives in poverty. Many disgruntled young Saudis end up becoming "foreign fighters" for the Islamic state (IS). Some 15 per cent of the Saudi population is Shia, under the heavy thumb of the Sunni-dominated state. Afshin Shahi, director of the Centre for the Study of Political Islam and lecturer in International Relations and Middle East Politics at University of Bradford, provides the following lucid analysis.
VATICAN
Pope: on the persecution of Christians, the international community should "not stand by mute and inactive” and “look away”For the sixth time in a week, Pope Francis mentioned the martyrdom of Christians in today’s Regina Caeli (the Marian prayer at Easter), slamming the indifference of the international community towards this "alarming failure to protect basic human rights.” Today’s martyrs "are many, and we can say that they are more numerous than in the first centuries." In addition, “Faith in the resurrection of Jesus and the hope He has brought to us is the most beautiful gift that a Christian can and must offer his brothers and sisters. To one and all, therefore, do not tire of repeating: Christ is Risen!”

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.