View Full Version : BERSIH 3.0: NUJ: Media harassed to black out police misconduct?
29th April 2012, 06:12 PM
NUJ: Media harassed to black out police misconduct?
11:04AM Apr 29, 2012
The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) today said the alleged heavy-handedness of police on media personnel during the Bersih 3.0 rally raises questions on the police’s claimed restraint and professional conduct.
http://media1-cdn.malaysiakini.com/279/de2a59049bf199db3189ee47df9e5358.jpgAs such general-secretary V Anbalagan (right) called on inspector-general of police Ismail Omar to explain why journalists were apparently targetted during yesterday’s rally.
“Media workers could be identified by their press tags...(so) why were they targeted yesterday? Is it to confiscate photos or footage which would have put (the police) in a very bad light?” he asked.
Speaking to Malaysiakini, he added that media personnel were carrying out their duties to “provide news coverage of an event which was closely followed by the public yesterday”.
NUJ also urged all media personnel who were roughed up, either by police or the public, and had their property harmed or seized, to lodge police reports.
Meanwhile, PKR has slammed the prime minister for “unprecedented” attacks and arrests of journalists covering the Bersih 3.0 rally yesterday.
“ It is clear that the press were systematically and deliberately targeted by the police force.
http://media1-cdn.malaysiakini.com/435/a6be950f7028e586e556a984341c5bb7.jpg“Such coordinated and sustained attacks could not have been carried out without orders from the police leadership and the Home Ministry,” said PKR vice-president N Surendran (left) in a statement today.
“Prime Minister Najib and his government must take full responsibility for the criminal acts against the press.
“Among those arrested were a photojournalists from Malaysiakini, Guang Ming newspaper and a Malay Mail journalist.
“Among others assaulted or had their cameras damaged or memory cards confiscated were journalists from Nanyang, Channel News Asia, Al Jazeera, Makkal Osai and Merdeka Review,” he added.
The human rights lawyer alleged that the attacks on the media were to “prevent journalists from recording police aggression, violence and assaults upon the public”.
“This explains why press photographers and photojournalists were mainly targeted.”
Yesterday Malaysiakini journalist Koh Jun Lin was arrested (http://www.tindakmalaysia.com/news/196348) along with several other members of the press while covering the rally at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur.
Koh reports he was punched by the police, and his memory card containg photographs of the rally were confiscated, while another photographer said police destroyed his memory card after he refused to delete photographs of a melee.
Do you have photographs or video clips depicting police brutality during Bersih 3.0? Let us help you share them with Malaysiakini readers. Contact us here: firstname.lastname@example.org
29th April 2012, 06:27 PM
He was never very bright to start off with.
Hisham: Photo equipment seized as part of SOP
5:25PM Apr 29, 2012
Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said the confiscation of memory cards and cameras belonging to newsmen during the Bersih 3.0 rally were part of the police's standard operating procedure (SOP).
Speaking at the Kuala Lumpur general hospital, Hishammuddin said this when asked why the items were seized since he claimed that the police had nothing to hide.
"I don't know. This is the standard operating procedure of police...," he said.
On police heavy-handed tactics on newsmen, Hishammuddin said such queries should be directed to the Inspector-General of Police, who will only be addressing the press tomorrow.
29th April 2012, 06:47 PM
[media_net] Joint Media Statement: Malaysian organisations condemn arrest, harassment, violence towards journalists during Bersih rally
*Joint Media Statement: Malaysian media groups **condemn arrest, harassment, violence towards journalists during Bersih rally*
29 April 2012
We from Malaysian media civil society organisations condemn the arrest of two journalists and police violence towards others who were covering the sit-down protest for free and fair elections in Kuala Lumpur on 28 April 2012. Media reports, video feeds, Facebook postings and tweets by the said journalists or their colleagues indicate at least six such cases:
- Arif Kartono, a photographer with English newspaper *Malay Mail*, alleged being assaulted by six uniformed police personnel and had his
- Koh Jun Lin, a photojournalist with online news site *Malaysiakini*was arrested after taking photographs which document alleged police
violence against protestors. Koh's camera and memory card were also confiscated. He was released yesterday but only his camera was returned.
- P. Malayandy, a photographer with Tamil newspaper *Makkal Osai*, was allegedly assaulted by about five policemen for taking pictures of police detaining protesters. His RM7,000 camera was allegedly snatched away by the police.
- *Al Jazeera *correspondent Harry Fawcett alleged police violence when his crew was documenting arrests and ill-treatment of protestors. Fawcett and colleagues were reportedly shoved and held, and their camera damaged during the incident. His video feed of Bersih 3.0 after the incident was recorded using Skype from an iPad tablet because the camera could no longer be used.
- Huang An Jian, a photographer with Mandarin newspaper *Guang Ming Daily*, was arrested while taking photographs of the arrest of protestors and alleged police assault. He was released yesterday.
- *Channel News Asia *video cameraperson Kenny Lew alleged being punched by police, and had his tripod seized.
- Chen Shaua Fui, assistant editor of Mandarin news site *Merdeka Review*, claimed rough handling by four policemen who tried to snatch her camera, and when she produced her media accreditation card, it was kicked aside and she was threatened with arrest.
- A journalist from news site *Malaysian Insider *was reportedly hit by a tear gas canister aimed at* *the crowd. (Note: Malaysian police has
been reported to fire teargas canisters *at* crowds of protesters rather than into the air during previous demonstrations.)
Our organisations view these incidents as a concerted attack on media freedom since they appear to be aimed at preventing professional
journalistic documentation of alleged police violence against some of the Bersih protesters.
In recent months, photographs and videos have captured scenes of violence and brutality against peaceful gatherings. These have embarrassed the perpetrators of the violence and those behind them. Only a few days ago, a mob attacked the peaceful Occupy Dataran encampment. Among those targeted were those activists wielding cameras or smart phones, ostensibly in a bid to thwart any attempt to document the violence and identify the perpetrators, leading up to the Bersih rally.
Yesterday’s rally, estimated to have attracted some 80,000 supporters, was led by the Coalition for Free and Fair Elections (Bersih 2.0).
The Coalition had intended a two-hour sit-down beginning 2pm at Kuala Lumpur's iconic Independence Square, but could only assemble around the square following a court order obtained by the police on 27 April preventing the public from entering the area until 1 May 2012. Multiple barriers and a razor wire were also erected around the square which was heavily guarded by riot police on the day of the protest. Chaos ensued after the crowd which had congregated from late morning was forced todisperse after police fired tear gas and shot chemical-laced water at them, and incidence of violence from both sides were reported.
We urge Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to conduct a thorough and swift investigation, and charge those responsible for these violent acts,
including those allegedly committed by police personnel towards journalists. Compensation must also be given to those whose equipment have been deliberately damaged. The Prime Minister must also adopt firm measures to ensure all uniformed personnel understand and respect the role of journalists.
Journalists, including press photographers, are professionals tasked with bearing witness to matters of public interest and reporting them ethically. This function is especially crucial when there are contentious subjects such as yesterday's protest, and information from as many sources as possible is needed to reveal the larger picture. Like the police, journalists have a public duty to perform and they should be afforded protection towards this end. Unless journalists are obstructing police work, they should be left alone to do their job. And certainly, no
journalist in a nation that prides itself as a democracy should ever be arrested for doing their job.
*Jointly issued by:*
*Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) Malaysia*
*Journalists Union of North Malaya*
*Penang Chinese Media Journalist and Photographers Association (PEWAJU)*
*Penang Press Club*
*Penang Press Employees Cooperative Society Limited*
For more information, contact: Masjaliza Hamzah, CIJ Executive Officer (email@example.com); Anil Netto and Mustafa K Anuar, Charter 2000-Aliran coordinators (firstname.lastname@example.org); or Ooi Choon Nam, PEWAJU secretary (email@example.com)
Centre for Independent Journalism Malaysia
Tel: +603-4023 0772
Facebook: Centre for Independent Journalism
The Centre for Independent Journalism, Malaysia (CIJ) is a non-profit organisation that aspires for a society that is democratic, just and free, where all peoples will enjoy free media and the freedom to express, seek and impart information.
7th May 2012, 09:52 AM
Even war correspondent 'intimidated' by violence
8:09AM May 3, 2012
For this 10th Middle Malaysia podcast, on World Press Freedom Day, media consultant Oon Yeoh speaks to online columnist and video journalist Zan Azlee about his experience in covering Bersih 3.0.
http://media1-cdn.malaysiakini.com/471/f5dd07621a53072e953c33dbb6a980e5.jpgZan says that in all his travels and all the assignments he has been on, he had never felt as intimidated as he was at Bersih 3.0 in Kuala Lumpur last Saturday.
And this is coming from a freelance journalist who has been to Afghanistan (right), Lebanon and South Thailand to shoot documentaries.
Zan figured something was amiss by early evening when he noticed that many police officers had taken off their name tags. And then he saw gangs of them beating up protestors.
He talks about how journalists got assaulted for shooting pictures and videos of police brutality. He himself was manhandled, hauled in and briefly detained by the police.
Like ‘kucing cari tikus’
After he was released, as he walking towards his car, Zan noticed a number of people lying unconscious on the street as ambulances came to pick them up one by one.
http://media1-cdn.malaysiakini.com/471/ab34d2f71d5a4d76bc2d7921f2c24e3d.jpgAs he reached his car, a bunch of men approached him and asked to be interviewed. They wanted to talk about the brutality they had witnessed. One man told him that the situation was like "kucing cari tikus".
In reflecting upon what he had witnessed and experienced, Zan says he feels a mixture of anger and sadness. Angry because of how journalists were treated and sad at how protestors were viciously beaten by gangs of rogue policemen.
But not one to be cowed, he says he hopes Bersih 4.0 happens sooner rather than later.
Listen to Zan in this 12-minute podcast (http://oonyeoh.podbean.com/wp-content/plugins/podpress/podpress_backend.php?podPressPlayerAutoPlay=yes&standalone=yes&action=showplayer&pbid=0&b=115320&id=2737189&filename=http://oonyeoh.podbean.com/mf/play/bssj5/ZanAzlee.mp3)
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.2.0 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.