Stop investigation and intimidation of Malaysian Freedom Film Fest

Stop investigation and intimidation of Malaysian Freedom Film Fest

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Human Rights Film Network started this petition to Minister of Home Affairs Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin and

#FreeFreedomFilmFest #EndCensorship 

On 2nd July, Anna Har, the festival director of the FREEDOMFILMFEST, Malaysia’s annual International Human Rights Film Festival and cartoonist Amin Landak were called in by the police for questioning over the production and screening of a short animated film on police torture, entitled Chili Powder and Thinner. On the same day, the police also raided the office of FreedomFilmFest and Amin’s home and confiscated their computers and other related equipment.

Subsequently, on 6 July, three members of human rights group SUARAM, who were the co-producers of the animated film, and a guest panel speaker at the screening event, were also called in for questioning by the police. 

Anna and Amin are being investigated under Section 500 of the Penal Code for defamation; Section 505(b) of the same Code that makes it a criminal offence for any publication that is likely to cause fear or alarm to the public; and Section 223 of the Communication and Multimedia Act(CMA) for improper use of network facilities or network service.

The laws being used to investigate them are extremely broad and vague, restrict the freedom of expression guaranteed under the Federal Constitution and are disproportionate and inconsistent with international law and standards. These legal provisions have been systematically used to arrest and investigate human rights defenders as an attempt by the government to silence criticism and dissenting opinions.

It is incredibly disturbing that the police have chosen to investigate artists and activists who raise serious concerns of custodial deaths, torture, abuse and misconduct by the police, instead of addressing the acts of violence and harm that have emerged repeatedly, especially in the past few months. Why have the authorities chosen to go after the messenger, instead of address the message itself?

We see these investigations as a form of intimidation and harassment of human rights defenders, including artists and storytellers.

Demands:

1. Drop all investigations on Anna Har, FreedomFilmFest, Amin Landak, cartoonist, and all individuals related to the production and screening of “Chili Powder and Thinner”

2. Protect the constitutional right of Malaysian filmmakers, artists and activists to freedom of expression.

3. Stop any forms of intimidation and censorship of human rights defenders in Malaysia.

#FreeFreedomFilmFest #EndCensorship 

Please also sign this petition: https://www.change.org/p/pdrm-gagal-ipcmc-now-end-police-brutality-and-misconduct-in-malaysia

0 have signed. Let’s get to 500!
At 500 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!