The crackdown by the authorities on protest rally organised by Bersih, has shown the ruling party in a bad light, writes Anil Netto.
The Barisan Nasional coalition finds itself on the political defensive after police personnel cracked down on a largely peaceful April 28 protest held in the national capital calling for electoral reforms.
The large popular turnout and government’s perceived mishandling of the rally will likely push back general elections, earlier expected to be called by June, as Prime Minister Najib Razak’s government deals with the fallout.
Reports and images of demonstrators being assaulted by police have been circulated, raising the hackles of international rights groups about the excessive use of force. The country’s Bar Council has condemned the violence against unarmed demonstrators while media freedom groups have expressed their concerns about the targeting of journalists who attempted to document scenes of police brutality.
Full article on Asia Times Online