Call on Mahathir to release the reformasi six under ISA  before he leaves for his meeting with US President next week to show the world that it is not only Burma but also Malaysia which is serious about democratisation  in South East Asia

Media Statement 
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya,  Wednesday):   The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad had commended the release of the Burmese opposition leader and Nobel Peace Prize Laureatte, Aung San Suu Kyi from 19-month house arrest by the Myanmese military junta on Monday as “progress” and  showing common sense on both sides. 

It is now the turn for Mahathir to show “progress” in the field of democracy and human rights as well as “good sense”.   He should release the  six reformasi activists, Mohamad Ezam Mohamad Nor, Hishamuddin Rais, Chua Tian Chang, Saari Sungib, Badrulamin Bahron and Lokman Noor Adam, who had been detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for more than a year before he leaves for his meeting with United States President Bush to show that it is not only Burma but also Malaysia which is serious about democratisation in South East Asia.  

In this connection, the new second-term Suhakam Commissioners should make a special representation to Mahathir for the release of the reformasi six before the Prime Minister’s departure for Washinton next week.  

Suhakam, under the chairmanship of Tan Sri Musa Hitam, made a public statement after a special meeting on April 11, 2001 expressing "deep regrets" over the ISA  detention of the reformasi activists, calling for their immediate release and that they should be charged and tried in an open court  for any offences. 

The new Suhakam Chairman, Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman and the second-term Suhakam should be bound by the decision of Suhakam of April 11, 2001 calling for the immediate release of the reformasi activists, and they should ask for a special meeting with the Prime Minister to urge the release of the reformasi activists before his departure for the United States.


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman