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‘Hypocrite’ govt must review UNHCR position

 | August 19, 2011

Taking the government to task for deporting Hindraf's lawyer, PKR MP Yusmadi Yusoff said Putrajaya should relook its place in the UN human rights council.

GEORGE TOWN: The deportation of Hindraf Makkal Sakti’s lawyer Imran Khan has mocked the universal concept of human rights, said PKR international bureau head Yusmadi Yusoff.

Hence, he called on Putrajaya to review Malaysia’s membership in the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

By denying Imran his professional right to a fact-finding mission and meeting with clients, he said Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s government brought disrepute to the country’s UNHRC position.

“Putrajaya has violated international human rights virtues.

“It’s a clear threat to human rights and is hypocritical. The government must immediately review its position in UNHRC,” said the Balik Pulau MP.

He said Imran’s deportation underlined Putrajaya’s hardline stand to halt the empowerment of human rights among its citizens.

Being a member of UNHRC, he added that Malaysia should instead be a role model to others with regard to upholding human rights values.

Yusmadi, who is a lawyer, noted that Imran was an international award-winning human rights lawyer and became a household name through his masterly legal representation for the family of Stephen Lawrence, who was murdered in a London racist attack in 1993.

He also praised Imran’s professionalism in upholding human rights values by taking up Hindraf’s suit despite being a Briton of Pakistani Muslim origin.

Imran had written a demand for compensation from the Malaysian government for the humiliation suffered after he was refused entry into the country upon his arrival at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) last Friday.

He planned to donate the compensation to a charity organisation.

His colleague Suresh Grover however was allowed entry and the latter left for London yesterday after meeting potential clients to be considered as co-claimants for the suit and accumulating evidence.

Meanwhile, Yusmadi also slammed Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein for making an ill-conceived decision to disallow Imran from meeting his clients.

With Malaysia being a Commonwealth member, he said, the Foreign Ministry now owed a public explanation due to Hishammuddin’s incompetence in revealing the reasons behind the immigration decision to refuse entry to Imran.

“What’s the point in talking about international political refugees, human trafficking and piracy when we can’t even allow lawyers to meet clients,” he said.


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