(Bangkok) – The Malaysian government is breaking a key election pledge by proposing to amend rather than repeal an abusive national security law, Human Rights Watch said today. The government on April 9, 2019, put before Parliament a bill to amend the National Security Council Act, the latest reversal of promises made by the ruling Pakatan Harapan alliance prior to the 2018 elections.The Pakatan Harapan, in its election manifesto published in 2018, called for rescinding the National Security Council Act, which the previous Barisan Nasional government enacted in 2016. The act empowers the prime ministerto declare security areas where special powers would apply, and grants government officials new powers to make warrantless arrests, impose curfews, take possession of land, buildings and other property, and dispense with inquests following the use of lethal force.
“The National Security Council Act is a rights-abusing law that should be revoked rather than tinkered with,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director. “Keeping this law on the books betrays the human rights principles the government proclaimed it was committed to uphold.”
The Pakatan Harapan manifesto, entitled “Buku Harapan: Rebuilding Our Nation, Fulfilling Our Hopes,” condemned “tyrannical laws” adopted by the government, including the National Security Council Act, and promised to revoke such laws if it came to power.
The proposed law includes provisions that will worsen basic rights protections. Provisions remaining in effect will allow the National Security Council (NSC), a federal agency under the Prime Ministers Department, to issue mandatory directives to any government entity, including all ministries and agencies, the armed forces, and the Royal Malaysia Police.
A proposed amendment increases the powers of the NSC to collect information without limit from the general populace. This includes allowing the council, through the director of operations, to “request from any individual or entity … any information or intelligence in his or its possession.” The failure to comply with such a request is a criminal offense, subject to imprisonment and hefty fines.
Another proposed amendment increases the possible prison term for those found disclosing information relating to the affairs of the council from two years to five.
“Not only is the Malaysian government keeping this draconian security law, it is introducing amendments that will expand the National Security Councils ability to violate rights,” Robertson said. “The government should keep to its manifesto pledge to abolish this act, along with other repressive laws such as the Sedition Act, the Prevention of Crime Act, and the Printing Presses and Publications Act.”
Vodafone makes 5G available in homes in Qatar
Tribune News Network
Vodafone Qatar continues its leadership in driving digital innovation with..
Tribune News Network
Vodafone Qatar continues its leadership in driving digital innovation with news that it is making 5G technology commercially available with the launch of its latest innovation- Vodafone GigaHome- the new home internet solution.
Vodafone GigaHome covers every size house with guaranteed Wi-Fi in every roomusing a state of the art Giga- Wi-Fi Hubpowered by Vodafones GigaNet networkincluding Fibre and 5G.Alongside this, customers can enjoy free lifestyle offers including Entertainer and WAVO by OSN whichprovides live channels from across the globe, TV shows and on-demand movies.
With Vodafone GigaHome there are no installation fees, no charges for moving to a new house and seamlessinstallation. This latest offering follows Vodafones announcement last month that it doubled the speed of all its existing customers home fibre internet for free.
Commenting on their latest launch, Vodafone Qatars Chief Operating Officer, Diego Camberos, said: “Were delighted to make 5G available in homes of Qatar to meet our customersneeds and lifestyle requirements. GigaHome Wi-Fisolves the fact that manyfamilies are experiencinginconsistent internetdue to poor Wi-Fi coverage in their homes.”
“The launch of Vodafone GigaHome isanother important milestone in our clear strategy to lead digital innovation in Qatar. Far more than mobile, we have been rolling out a full spectrum of digital solutions for personal and business use; all supported by our world-class network– GigaNet,” added Camberos.
Kushner: Mideast plan to come after Ramadan, seek Palestinian investment
US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner said Tuesday he would present his long-awaited ..
US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner said Tuesday he would present his long-awaited Middle East peace proposal around June and that it would include a “robust business plan” for the Palestinians.[contfnewc]
Kushner, speaking at a forum of Time magazine, said he had hoped to offer the proposal late last year but that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had called elections and still needs time to form a coalition.[contfnewc]
“Once that’s done we’ll probably be in the middle of Ramadan, so we’ll wait until after Ramadan and then we’ll put our plan out,” said Kushner, a senior advisor to Trump, referring to the Muslim fasting month which ends in early June.
Kushner’s plan has already been met with deep skepticism from the Palestinians, who say Trump cannot be an honest broker after he took the landmark step of recognizing bitterly disputed Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.[contfnewc]
But Kushner, whose own role has been questioned due to his longstanding family ties with Netanyahu, said he remained hopeful that his “unconventional approach” would bear fruit.
“I think that if people focus on the old traditional talking points we will never make progress,” he said.[contfnewc]
He declined to answer if the plan would include longstanding US support for a Palestinian state, after hints by the administration that it would not, but said it would include investment to boost the Palestinian economy.
“Our focus is really on the bottom up, which is how do you make the lives of the Palestinian people better, what can you resolve to allow these areas to become more investable?” he said.[contfnewc]
“We deal with all the core status issues because you have to do it, but we’ve also built a robust business plan for the whole region,” he added.
Kushner also said the plan would address Israel’s concerns over security.
“I think that what we do is something that allows for Israel to maintain security, but there will be tough compromises for both,” he said.
Netanyahu in his election campaign vowed to annex parts of the West Bank where Israeli settlers live, a prospect that would doom longstanding Palestinian hopes of a state.[contfnewc]
The Israeli leader said Tuesday he plans to name a new settlement in the occupied Golan Heights after Trump in appreciation of his recognition of Israel’s claim of sovereignty there.
Trump broke with longstanding international consensus last month when he recognized Israel’s claim of sovereignty over the part of the strategic plateau it seized from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War.[contfnewc]
The decision came only two weeks ahead of the tightly contested Israeli election, which saw Netanyahu win a record fifth term in office.
The Trump administration has also cut funding that the United States had supplied to a UN agency helping Palestinian refugees and their descendants.
Last year, it slashed funding to the agency by $300 million and said it would not repeat the $60 million that it did provide.[contfnewc]
Kushner has also cultivated close personal ties with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman as part of his efforts to forge regional backing for his plan.
The heir to the Saudi throne has however been the focus of widespread criticism over the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in its Istanbul consulate.
Kushner sidestepped a question Tuesday about reports that the US intelligence services had concluded that the prince had ordered the journalist’s murder.
“I’m not going to dispute American intelligence services’ recommendations. I’m also not going to talk about anything intelligence related,” Kushner said.[contfnewc]
Read From Source[contfnewc]
Qatari Emir in Rwanda for three-day state visit
The Emir of Qatar, His Highness Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, arrived in Rwanda on Sunday, leading a hig..
The Emir of Qatar, His Highness Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, arrived in Rwanda on Sunday, leading a high-powered delegation of senior government officials and business executives from the Gulf state.
He is in the country for a three-day state visit.
Upon his arrival yesterday, the Emir, together with his host, President Paul Kagame witnessed the signing of four bilateral agreements between the two countries
The signing, which was preceded by a tete-a-tete between the two leaders, took place at Village Urugwiro in Kacyiru.
The agreements were signed in the areas of culture, sports, cooperation in the field of tourism and business events.
The two countries also signed agreements between Aviation Travel and Logistics (ATL) and Qatar Airways.
ATL is the parent company of the national carrier, RwandAir.
The visit by the Emir of Qatar follows one by the countrys Deputy Prime Minister, Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, last month.
Prior to this, President Kagame had visited the country last year.
The two nations have been working to increase cooperation in various aspects including diplomatic cooperation, political dialogue as well as different potential investments in Agriculture, technology, mining, transport, tourism.
In February this year, Members of Parliament approved a bilateral investment treaty between Rwanda and Qatar that was signed last year.
During the approval, parliament was informed that Rwanda is already in talks with potential investors from Qatar who have expressed keen interest in investing in coffee, education and agriculture among other areas.
The two nations also have pacts that cover air services business, reciprocal promotion and protection of investments and a memorandum of understanding on economic, commercial as well as technical cooperation.
Qatar and Rwanda also share ties through agreements in civil aviation, with Qatar Airways, the Gulf States flag carrier, operating direct flights to Rwanda since 2012.
Following the signing of the agreements, President Kagame hosted a dinner in honour of his guest and his delegation.
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