Monday, September 15, 2008

PDRM's Media Statement on the ISA arrests - 15/9/2008

In recent weeks, there has been an escalation of racially insensitive, seditious and disparaging acts and remarks by individuals and organisations bringing about a state of unrest and religious tension in the country.

When the police decided to invoke the ISA, the decision was based on intelligence and observation that certain acts by the individuals concerned were detrimental to the calm, peace and harmony of the country.

These acts if not curtailed would cause public disorder and be a threat to national security. An arrest under the ISA is only made when the police strongly believes that certain acts by individual can pose a serious threat to public order and national security.

These are the grounds in which the police based their decision on.

When there are reasonable ground the police will act accordingly under the provisions of Section 73(1) of the ISA. An arrest under the Section provides the police with means to investigate and verify whether the intelligence received can be substantiated.

In the case of the Sin Chew Daily news reporter, she was released as soon as the police had verified the intelligence and found no grounds to detain her further.

In the case of Raja Petra Kamaruddin and Teresa Kok, the police need time to investigate further on their alleged involvement in acts that can be considered as prejudicial to the security of the country.

We have 60 days under the ISA to investigate. As soon as we can establish that we have no firm grounds to substantiate our believes that they pose a threat to national security, we will release those persons.

But at any time within the 60 days, we find that our beliefs are substantiated, we will subject the case to the Minister with the recommendation that the person be detained under the Minister’s order of detention under Section 8(1) of the ISA.

In so far as the investigation is concerned, the police will conduct the investigation professionally and expeditiously, as it would not be in the public interest for the police to act otherwise.

The public are hereby advised not to take matters into their own hands except in accordance to law.

Let the police work within the system and laws of the country. Racial and religious unrest can be triggered over small matters and can escalate into situations that are damaging and irreversible.

We cannot allow the May 13, Kg Medan and Kg Rawa incidents to repeat and destroy the country.

The police will have to take pre-emptive measures in order to prevent the situation from getting out of control.

As such, the public must allow the police to act within the perimeters of the law in this country, including the ISA, which is a swift mechanism for effective action.

The police are continuously monitoring the situation and will not hesitate to take action against anyone who continues inciting racial and religious issues which are detrimental to the calm, peace and harmony of the country.

In the interest of the nation’s peace and harmony, the police will act without fear or favour. The police wish to reiterate and affirm that at the current moment, the situation in this country is calm and under control.

Tan Sri Ismail Omar Deputy Inspector General of Police

Source: Malaysian Bar Website

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