Malaysia rejects visas for Aussie staffers, says Al-Jazeera

The Qatar-based media company is being investigated by officials over its “Locked up in Malaysia’s Lockdown” programme. (Reuters pic)

PETALING JAYA: Broadcaster Al Jazeera said on Thursday that Malaysian authorities have refused to renew the work visas of two of its Australian journalists, just days after the network’s Kuala Lumpur office was raided by police.

The Qatar-based network is being investigated by officials over its “Locked up in Malaysia’s Lockdown” programme, which was critical of the treatment of migrant workers during the coronavirus epidemic.

Al-Jazeera English managing director Giles Trendle

Angered by the story, authorities last month questioned Al Jazeera staff, with police seizing two computers from their office on Tuesday.

Al Jazeera English managing director Giles Trendle confirmed in a statement that Malaysia had refused to renew the work visas of staff members Drew Ambrose and Jenni Henderson.

The company did not provide any further details at this point and immigration officials could not be reached for comment.

In an interview on Wednesday, IGP Abdul Hamid Bador said the investigation was being carried out “very professionally”.

Officials are also seeking to deport a Bangladesh national for speaking to the network in the documentary.

Malaysia said the documentary tarnished the country’s image.

Thousands of migrants from poorer countries in the regions, including Bangladesh, Indonesia and Myanmar, travel to Malaysia in search of better work prospects.