Standing by Melaka rep arrested over LTTE links, Kit Siang insists Sosma must go

Justin Ong
Lim said DAP would provide Gunasekaran any legal aid necessary and repeated his insistence that it was unthinkable for the latter to be involved in terrorist activities. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — The government must repeal the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act or Sosma used to detain without trial two DAP lawmakers accused of terrorist links, said Lim Kit Siang.

Speaking at the home of his party’s Seremban Jaya assemblyman P. Gunasekaren, Lim said the security law had been used by the previous government against whistleblowers and should not be retained under the new administration.

“Last year there was a change in power and we promised a transparent government, so the police must also have a change in attitude to be consistent with the government of the day,” Lim said.

“If there is truth — and I do not believe this — that Guna was involved in terrorism, then bring him to court so he can defend himself.”

Lim pointed out that repealing Sosma was among pledges in the ruling coalition’s election manifesto.

Sosma was introduced in 2012 by the Barisan Nasional administration and gave the police the ability to detain individuals for up to 29 days at a time without trial, renewable indefinitely.

Although ostensibly meant to provide Putrajaya powers to counteract terrorism, its framing allowed it to be tacked on to any case deemed to affect national security.

Today, Lim said DAP would provide Gunasekaran any legal aid necessary in the matter and repeated his insistence that it was unthinkable for the latter to be involved in terrorist activities.

On Thursday, Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter-terrorism Division principal assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay confirmed that Gunasekaran and Gadek assemblyman G. Saminathan were among five people arrested on suspicion of supporting the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

The LTTE was a separatist group that had been active in Sri Lanka until it was officially defeated 2009. It has been classified as a terrorist group by 32 countries including Malaysia, which did so in 2014.

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