Malaysiakini

Tear gas, water cannons fired at Bersih protesters

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LIVE REPORTS

8.15pm: Dataran Merdeka - The policemen are seen having their dinner and chatting after the arrests have come to an end.

The last man rounded up by the police is Bersih committee member Wong Chin Huat, who is hauled up the police truck around 7.30pm.

As of 8pm, 388 people have been arrested. According to Bernama, a total of 63 protesters are receiving treatment at Hospital Kuala Lumpur, including two police officers.

7.30pm: The police say that as of 7pm, 222 have been arrested. 

NONE6.55pm: Masjid Jamek - Police shoot tear gas in the Masjid Jamek area to disperse the protesters who are still there.

6:55pm: Jalan Tun Perak-Jalan Parlimen - Scores of traffic police officers arrive on their motorbikes.

The police officers are seen ‘ambushing’ the protesters. Many of those arrested appear injured bleeding in the nose or head. One of the protesters is sent in an ambulance to the hospital.

6.53pm: Masjid Jamek
- After the police have a brief meeting, they begin a mass arrest of the remaining protestors.

A man who is on his bike is kicked by the police and later dragged into the FRU truck. Some protestors later report that they were beaten while they were being transported under custody.

6.45pm: Dataran Merdeka - Police at Dataran are going all out to round up the protesters around Jalan TAR and Jalan Tun Perak; some protesters are bleeding after being arrested by the police.

NONE6.25pm: Masjid Jamek - FRU trucks are deployed to control the situation at Masjid Jamek.

6:24pm: Jalan Tun Perak - At the Jalan Parliament junction a large number of protesters are still gathered, taunting the over 1,000 policemen present, who retaliate by chasing them in a cat-and-mouse game.

6.22pm: Jalan Sultan Abdul Samad - Malaysiakini witnesses a delegation of police special forces in their cars.

The convoy is forced to U-turn near Masjid Jamek when met with a hostile reception from protesters, who throw shoes and objects at them. Windows of two cars are smashed in the process.

6pm: Jalan TAR - Hundreds of police are at Jalan TAR, which is congested because of the roadblocks.

Motorists sound their horns continuously, forcing the police to disperse and regroup at the Jalan Tun Perak junction. They begin to allow traffic through. 

5.50pm: Batu MP Tian Chua and former International Islamic University (UIA) law professor Dr Abdul Aziz Bari have been arrested.

"Now I'm arrested, police hit us as we were dragged thru rows of rowdy officers - many got beaten up after being arrested," reads Chua's tweet.

5.45pm: Masjid Jamek - Some protesters still want to push into Dataran Merdeka, but the police return and give chase. A number of protesters are arrested, while some of them throw shoes and bottles at the police.

5.34pm: Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein says the lost police pistol has been found. He tweets:

"2 policemen injured & admitted. Snatched police pistol was recovered."

5.30pm: Dataran Merdeka - A Malaysiakini journalist is detained along with around 200 protesters and another journalist, all of whom are being held at the Royal Selangor Club.

His camera and memory card have been confiscated and he is also punched once by the police.

NONE5.30pm: KL Sentral - Bersih at a press conference by the organisers calls the event is a success with 250,000 turnout.

However, they express regret over certain incidents that have taken place, and suspect sabotage, saying the behaviour reported is “unusual”.

5.26pm: Jalan TAR, in front of Sogo - Police are seen to be checking the police overturned car.

5.15pm: Intersection of Jalan Tun HS Lee and Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock, near CIMB Bank - PAS Unit Amal (security unit) is making its rounds, urging the remaining protesters to disperse.

Meanwhile, thousands are still gathered in front of Masjid Jamek. They gather along Jalan Tun Perak, facing off a few police trucks.

They shout "Bersih, Bersih", but the police trucks suddenly make a U-turn and head back to Dataran Merdeka. The crowd claims victory.

5:13pm: Jalan TAR - The situation on Jalan TAR appears to be calm after a FRU truck retreats. There is no police presence along the road from Maju Junction to Pertama Complex.

Some of the protesters are seen heading back towards Dataran Merdeka.

The area in front of Bar Council building is now deserted as most of the protesters have dispersed.

But there are still protesters in two main areas - from Masjid Jamek to Dataran Maybank and those on Jalan TAR.

5.12pm: Jalan Pudu, near Dataran Maybank
- The back window of a car has been shattered, with the protesters saying that it was caused by a tear gas canister fired by FRU.

5:01pm: Jalan TAR - Four police trucks head towards Jalan Chow Kit while protesters shout “Hancur FRU” and “Hidup Bersih". The protesters show no sign of dispersing.

5pm: Detainees are being held at the Police Training Centre (Pulapol) in Kuala Lumpur.

4.55pm: Masjid Jamek - Hundreds of people are trapped inside the Masjid Jamek mosque. Police have blocked the entrance to the mosque compound.

NONE4.55pm: Dataran Maybank - Police fire tear gas at the gathering near Dataran Maybank, dispersing the crowd.

4.50pm: According to an official post on the police Facebook page, a pistol was stolen during a melee near the Sogo shopping mall. 

"The public is advised to be cautious of any eventualities," reads the post.

4.52pm: Pasar Seni - Police continue to provoke the protesters and prepare to fire tear gas at them. Malaysiakini witnesses a policeman firing tear gas in the direction of protesters at Jalan Tun HS Lee.

4.50pm: Masjid Jamek - Shabidi Ahmad, a Felda settler from Perak says, “I came by train. Just now, while sitting at Masjid Jamek, they fired tear gas.

“I was really scared, my eyes, teeth, everything hurt. I just ran,” he says.

“I think the police shouldn’t do this, people are not causing disturbance or starting fights, people came here without weapons.”

Shabidi said he hopes for change, adding, “I ask the rakyat to (work for) change, because I feel this government is really cruel to the people.”

4:50pm: Jalan Raja Laut
- In front of Pertama complex, men from four FRU trucks fire tear gas, forcing protesters to move in the direction of Jln Chow Kit. The protesters are unfazed and press on.

And elderly man from Kedah says, “I am not afraid. Why should I be afraid of them?”

4.45pm: Jalan TAR - At both ends of Jalan TAR the hour long confrontation between rally participants and FRU ends when the police attack from both ends.

NONE4.41pm: Jalan Tun Perak-Masjid Jamek LRT station - FRU fires another round of tear gas but the 2,000-strong crowd refuses to back down.

Police being arresting the protesters and at least one person is arrested.

4.30pm: Jalan Petaling - Close to Pasar Raya 1 Supermart seven policemen apprehend and stomp on a protester.

4.27pm: Dataran Maybank - Angry protesters throw empty water bottles at a passing police van.

4.25pm: Jalan Tun Perak-Masjid Jamek LRT station - Several tear gas canisters are fired towards the Masjid Jamek LRT station by the police, at the crowd there, and they start to arrest people who are milling around the station.

Despite several rounds of water cannon being fired, the protesters refuse to retreat and regroup soon after. 

4:23pm: Jalan TAR - A police vehicle allegedly hits two protesters in front of Sogo shopping centre, injuring them.

An angry crowd surrounds the police vehicle, which has been abandoned, and overturns it. [VIDEO l 1.17 mins]

NONEA police video shows protesters attacking the police car, including a couple of them stomping on roof of the car, before it crashed.

Another video shows the car ramming into a group of protesters before coming to a NONEhalt.

Yet another video indicates that a protester was injured after being hit by the car as it ran out of control. The driver of the car, who was wearing a crash helmet, was pulled out the crowd and beaten. However, the second man in the car was protected by a number of protesters.

Someone then shouted that a person was caught underneath the car and subsequently the crowd overturned the vehicle.

4.21pm: Masjid Jamek - A man faints near Masjid Jamek and is helped by the Bersih medical team as well as by PAS Unit Amal members, who carry him to HSBC bank beside the river for treatment.

Both the Bersih medical team and the government’s Jabatan Pertahanan Awam (Civil Defence Department) attend to the man while waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

4.20pm: A member of the public, Jamaluddin Mohd Salleh from Sepang, says: “FRU fired tear gas at Masjid Jamek and someone suffered breathing difficulties.

“The gathering was indeed peaceful, but after it was over, the police fired tear gas.

“And now they block the roads. People want to go home, but yet they close the roads and fire tear gas again.”

4.20pm: Petaling Street - Police fire water cannons in the direction of protesters at Jalan Petaling and Jalan HS Lee. The protesters run helter-skelter, but continue shouting “Bersih” at the police near them.

4:10pm - Jalan TAR - A group of protesters sit along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, which has been closed off. An ice-cream seller is doing a roaring business as protesters seek to quench their thirst.

FRU men fire chemical-laced water at them in front of the Kamdar department store along Jalan TAR.

4.04pm: Earlier, a number of reporters standing behind the FRU get pushed by the police towards the protesters while tear gas is being fired, exposing them to the acrid gas.

4.00pm: Jalan TAR - Near Kamdar, a man believed to be in his 30s is seen throwing a canister of tear gas back to the FRU, to loud applause from the crowd while the media look on. Later a woman faints from the tear gas.

3.58pm: A 35-year-old man suffers difficulty in breathing near Dataran Maybank, as a result of the tear gas attacks. He recovers after a medical team attends to him.

3.58pm: Masjid Jamek - Hundreds of protesters are resting to the park behind Masjid Jamek to recover from the water cannon and tear gas attacks.

3.55pm: Dataran Maybank - Despite tear gas fired at Jalan Tun Perak, the crowd in front of Puduraya and Dataran Maybank have not dispersed.

NONE3.51pm: Bar Council - Bersih steering committee member Andrew Khoo condemns the tear gas and water cannon attacks, saying: "This is unwarranted, escalated violence. The crowd is very peaceful, a lot of people are just coming to take photographs.

"This is very unnecessary aggressive behaviour and I wholly condemn the violence.”

3.49pm: Jalan Raja Laut - About 35 protesters are arrested in front of the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) building.

3.50pm: Sogo Shopping Mall - Pockets of protesters retreat from Dataran Merdeka to Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman and are being chased by police.

3.42pm: Dang Wangi LRT station - After the police fire tear gas canisters on Jalan Tun Perak, some of the protesters flee to Jalan Dang Wangi and Jalan Ampang.

They are seen walking towards KLCC via Jalan Ampang. Most of them are expected to head home.

3.40pm: Masjid Jamek - At Jalan Tun Tan Siew Sin and Jalan Yap Ah Loy, the police fire tear gas at the protesters who have dispersed from Masjid Jamek.

NONE3.36pm: Masjid India - A 37-year-old woman identified only as Chong is injured by tear gas, with the canister hitting her neck causing a bruise. She suffers no other injury, and people in the crowd send her for treatment. 

3.29pm: Bar Council - After orders to disperse are issued, water cannons and tear gas are fired at the crowd outside the Bar Council building at Lebuh Pasar Besar.

3.24pm: Masjid Jamek - The crowd in front of the LRT stations refuses to budge and they keep shouting “Bersih” despite tear gas being fired at them.

They retreat whenever a round of tear gas is fired, but return soon after.

3:20pm: Dataran Merdeka - Protesters remove the barbed wire put up at Lebuh Pasar Besar and then move the plastic barricades aside.

Some 30 police officers armed with batons, shields and gas masks move in to form a phalanx.

The protesters and police are now directly face-to-face. Some pose for photographs while others sit on the road facing the police.

The police field commander for the area sits atop a police truck with a loudhailer, but is yet to issue any order.


3.15pm: Dataran Merdeka
- Police say they are forced to fire tear gas because the crowd tried to dismantle their barricade to Dataran Merdeka. The rally has until now been free of incidents.

3.10pm: Masjid Jamek - More tear gas is fired near the Masjid Jamek LRT stations. It is learnt that several protesters who tried to breach the Dataran Merdeka cordon have been arrested.

3.02pm: Jalan Tun Perak - Police are firing tear gas canisters from Dataran Merdeka. The crowd turns around and walks towards Dataran Maybank, away from the square.

However, they are unfazed by the tear gas and shout at the police. Some are taking photographs of the tear gas attacks from afar.

3.01pm: Jalan TAR - A round of tear gas is fired at protesters who are at the Jalan TAR-Jalan Tun Perak junction. Police also unleash chemical-laced water from a water-cannon truck stationed there.

It is believed that some of the demonstrators have breached the Dataran Merdeka area that was declared off-limits by a court order yesterday.

Some of the protesters are arrested.

2.45pm: Pasar Seni - A protester, Wan Chee Hung, 34, breaks through the barricade at the Bar Council to give a purple flower to several FRU officers as a sign of peace.

The officers do not move to receive his offering, so he pins it on the uniform on one of the officers.

Wan says the flower is a friendly gesture, and hopes that the police will allow the crowd to walk into Dataran.

The police do not act on his breach, but tell him to return behind the barricade as he talks to the press.

2.45pm: Pasar Seni - The crowd near the Bar Council premises, now estimated at around 5,000, begin to disperse.

A spirited groups remain in front of the barricade and barbed wire separating the crowd from Dataran Merdeka across the river. Behind the barricade, some 80m away, FRU trucks loom.

Around 50 FRU men are standing by. The crowds shout Bersih slogans, including “Hancur Rosmah” and “Buka Pintu” (End to Rosmah, Open the door).

NONE2.35pm: Masjid Jamek - At Masjid Jamek LRT, Anwar Ibrahim finally reaches a makeshift stage on the back of a pick-up truck, after negotiating a sea of people.

The opposition leader looks spirited, though tired, calling today a historic day because the rakyat has managed to send the message of their demand for clean elections from PM Najib Razak.

“Today Malaysians have made history. The people are no longer afraid,” he said.

“Over 250,000 people have gathered. What does this mean? It means we have succeeded, the rakyat have succeeded.

“We thank you all. As the Bersih chief said, we have succeeded in sending a clear message.

“We want elections to be clean,” said a feisty Anwar to loud cheers from a sea of people who packed Jalan Masjid Jamek, the main road in front of the LRT stations, to the brim.

“Malays, Chinese, and Indians today all want the dirty government to end,” he said, after which he called on the protesters to disperse.

“The time has come for us to disperse peacefully and in an orderly manner,” he said, thanking everyone.

Ambiga then took to the stage, repeating Anwar’s message and called on all to disperse peacefully.

Howeverm many in the crowd chanted “Dataran Merdeka” and motioned for the two leaders to head for the square.

The pick-up truck with Anwar and Ambiga on board begins a slow approach in the direction of Dataran.

NONE2.34pm: Masjid Jamek - Bersih co-chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan says the rally has been a success and urges the crowd to disperse. 

However, the unrelenting crowd replies by chanting "Dataran! Dataran!"

Prior to Ambiga's speech, PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim tells the crowd that the rakyat have made it clear that they will not tolerate dirty politics.

Anwar is part of the crowd that marched from Masjid Negara. 

For the past half hour rallyers at the north end of the Dataran have been chanting “Open”, asking for the barricades to be removed. FRU are seen standing by.

2.25pm: Pasar Seni - DAP members are asking the crowd to stay calm and not provoke the police. They also ask the crowd to start dispersing slowly.

2.22pm: Jalan Hang Lekiu - Mohd Sabu tells Bersih supporters to sit down and let Anwar, Hadi, Kit Siang, Wan Azizah, Kadir Sheikh Fadzir and Saifuddin Nasution through to proceed to Dataran Merdeka.

The atmosphere is orderly, although congested.

2.15pm: Puduraya - The 10,000 crowd from Masjid Negara reaches Puduraya in a long march to Dataran Merdeka.

2pm: Masjid Jamek - MCA Kelana division commitee member Lee Hwa Beng is spotted near the McDonalds outlet.

He says that he joined the rally in his personal capacity and that MCA has made it clear that it will not bar members from participating.

Asked why he joined the rally, Lee quotes from his new book - PKFZ: A Nation's Trust Betrayed - that silence is no longer an option.

Asked if he is enjoying himself thus far, Lee replied, "I'm thirsty and hungry".

However, he was coy when asked if he is quitting MCA and joining another party. Lee is the former Subang Jaya state assemblyperson.

2pm: Dataran Merdeka -  Bersih 2.0 steering committee member Maria Chin Abdullah is speaking at the Jalan Tun Perak - Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman intersection.

"We have made it to Dataran Merdeka. We are sending a message to the Election Commission that the rakyat want free and fair election.

"We also want the EC chief to step down," she said, to which the crowd respondes with chants of "Bersih!".

2pm: The crowd is now concentrated in three key areas - Jalan Tun Perak (from Masjid Jamek to Dataran Merdeka), Lebuh Pasar Besar (near the Bar Council headquarters) and Masjid Negara.

Effectively, the crowd has now completely surrounded Dataran Merdeka from the north, east and the south.

Another group is expected to join the rally from Masjid Negara. 

NONE2pm: Human Rights Watch’s Asia deputy director Phil Robertson,, division, Human Rights Watch writes, “Today is a major test case for basic freedoms in Malaysia, starting with the right to peacefully march and assemble.

“The big question is whether or not the Malaysian police will permit the Bersih 3.0 event to take place without harassment or violence.” 

1:55pm: Pasar Seni - A Samad Said said will continue his sit-in protest on a pedestrian bridge near here instead of joining the rest at Dataran Merdeka.

"I use this bridge every week but for the first time in my life they do not allow me to pass, they asked me to use another route. This is the road I use to go to the mosque," he related for the reason of his bridge protest.

1.50pm: Masjid Negara - A crowd of 10,000 are now gathered at the mosque, and have begun heading to the old Syariah Court past the old railway station.

They then turn left and cross the bridge over the railway line to head to Dataran along the back of the railway station in the direction of Pasar Seni.

With the Unit Amal leading the way, the crowd is believed to be taking the long route to Dataran because the police have cordoned off the direct route with a human wall.

1:45pm: Pasar Seni - Some 30 people have decided to join Pak Samad to 'duduk bantah' on the pedestrian bridge at Pasar Seni LRT.

"These police blocks; if we do not oppose them then it is our own fault," Pak Samad told the crowd in his usual poetic tone.

1.38pm: Masjid Negara - PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang arrives.

1.30pm: Masjid Negara - Muslim Bersih supporters break for zohor prayers and is prepared to move towards Dataran shortly after prayers conclude.

Two small lorries selling drinks and snacks are doing roaring business. Each has sold off three barrels of drinks and run out of water.

Meanwhile the nasi kandar store at the old train station has nearly run out of drinks. Malaysiakini spots the cashier busily ringing up sales from Bersih supporters. Amidst the unending business she manages to answer, “Alhamdullilah,” before getting back to business.

NONE1.30pm: Dataran Merdeka - The huge crowd from Kota Raya and Petaling Street moves closer to Dataran. Both Kota Raya and Petaling Street are now empty.

The crowd closest to the barricade at Dataran Merdeka sit on the road, with more chanting "sit down" and joining in. Members from the PAS Unit Amal form a human wall in front of the police barricade.

A layer of barbed wire, plastic road barriers and metal fence, separate them from a police human wall of about 100 personnel. The FRU (riot police) with its water cannon trucks are on standby just beyond.

1.33pm: Pasar Seni - The police decide to abandon their blockade of the pedestrian bridge linking Pasar Seni LRT and Dayabumi. Some supporters join Pak Samad in prayer. Protesters have begun filling the bridge to get a view of the protest below.

1.30pm: Pasar Seni - A PAS Unit Amal officer clarifies that Pak Samad is not detained by police but is sitting on the pedestrian bridge as a sign of protest against police action to block it. He is standing here on his own.

1.23pm: Pasar Seni - Bersih co-chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan says, "We are staging peaceful rally. We will go as far as the authorities the allow us to go. After that we will sit down in protest."

She declares that the rally is already a success.

1.20pm: Jalan Tun Perak - Bersih committee member Wong Chin Huat is speaking in front of Dataran Maybank and leads the crowd into chanting "EC resign" and "We want international observers".

1.18pm: Dataran Merdeka - The crowd from Pasar Seni has now converged near the Bar Council headquarters. The crowd size is estimated at 10,000.

1.16pm: Dataran Merdeka - More water-cannon trucks are being deployed around Dataran Merdeka. The police appear determined to stop anyone from entering the public square, which has been declared off-limits by the court. 

1:15pm: Pasar Seni - Four Unit Amal officers are speaking to the police. It is speculated that they are checking on Bersih co-chairperson A Samad Said, who is behind a police line.  

1.15pm: Bar Council - More and more people are streaming into Bar Council area, which is next to Dataran Merdeka, creating a sea of yellow all the way to Jalan Petaling in Chinatown. 

1.13pm: One hour before the Bersih 3.0 rally, there are an estimated 50,000 protesters scattered in different parts of Kuala Lumpur city centre.

Pudu/Kotaraya/Petaling Street (crowd marched from KLCC) - 20,000

Pasar Seni (merged with crowd from Brickfields) - 15,000

Masjid Jamek - 10,000

TAR/Jalan Tun Perak/Jalan Parliament - 10,000

Masjid Negara - 5,000

NONE1.11pm: Jalan Tun Perak, near Menara Maybank

The crowd in front of Pudu Sentral begins marching towards Dataran Merdeka after a long wait.

Before that, a speaker tells the crowd of the serious corruption problem in Malaysia and the abuse of public funds causing the country to become less competitive.

“(Prime Minister) Najib Razak went to every state to distribute money, but the money belongs to the people.

“They can block the roads, but can they block our spirit?” asked the speaker who identified herself as Jacqueline Neo. She initially refused to let go of the loudhailer before finally returning it to the emcee.

Speaking to the press later, Neo said that she has been living in England for 14 years before returning to Malaysia a year ago.

1.10pm: Jalan Tun Perak - Close to Mydin wholesale emporium, the Jln Sultan procession arrives at Dataran Maybank.

1.09pm: Masjid Jamek - Unit Amal forms a human chain and leads thousands from the LRT towards the Dataran.

1.08pm: Jalan Tun Razak - Among the PAS leaders here now are vice-president Mahfuz Omar, the Muslimat chief Zailah Mohd Yusof and PAS central committee member Syed Azman.

1.00pm: Jalan Petaling - A lorry bearing a large yellow flag leads the march down Jalan Sultan towards Dataran. PKR Youth leader Badrul Hisham Shaharin is on the lorry assuring the crowds not to fear.

He tells them they are heading to the Dataran where most of the leaders have gathered.

Meanwhile, a group of ladies calling themselves ‘Bersih mamas’ bearing flowers chant, "Mama Bersih kuat (Bersih mothers are strong)," to cheers from the crowd.

1pm: Pasar Seni - A group of 3,000 march from Jalan Petaling area to join the crowd at Bar Council. It is believed the crowd here is now roughly 5,000.

12:51pm: Jalan Tun Razak - PKR Wanita chief Zuraida Kamaruddin speaks in front of CIMB bank. “We are gathered today because we want clean elections. We want everyone to sit and protest,” she said.

“Today Malaysians have awaken and will rise.”

Meanwhile Jalan Tun Perak is filled to the brim with roughly 10,000 and shouts of “Bersih” can be heard. A police chopper hovers above.

12.50pm: Masjid Negara - Mohd Sabu leads the crowd to sing, "On the 28th, in the month of April, Independence, Independence of the Dataran from the colonisers."

Anwar then rousers the crowd in the Masjid compound with his speech, in a slightly hoarse voice.

Beginning with four shouts of "Bersih", he continues, "Today, we reclaim the people's rights. Freedom, from the cheating of the EC.

"Agreed? Let's rise then, rise, people.

"Enough of fraud. Enough of cheating. Enough of corruption. We demand our rights.

"Today we will head to Dataran Merdeka and liberate the Dataran on this very day," he said, to cheers and thunderous applause from the crowd.

The mostly young crowd at the Masjid are energetic and impatient to get to the iconic city square.

12.50pm: Pasar Seni - A second group from Brickfields, also numbering in the thousands, arrives at Pasar Seni to converge with the rest of the crowd.

NONE12.43pm: Masjid Negara - PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and party de facto chief Anwar Ibrahim arrive with international observers.

Anwar and Wan Azizah start towards Dataran and runs against a police human wall 50m ahead. They turn back and head towards where Mat Sabu and Kit Siang are gathered.

There is some tension as two police trucks move and accelerate towards Anwar and Wan Azizah, from behind. Bersih participants rush forward and block the trucks from reaching the duo, banging on the sides of the two trucks. 

12.40pm: Pasar Seni - DAP chairperson Karpal Singh arrives in front of the Bar Council, rousing the crowds to cheer and shout “Bersih”.

12.35pm: Jalan Tun Perak - Australian upper house senator Nicholas Xenophon is present, observing the rally.

"This is an interesting atmosphere with more than 10,000 people. Everyone is in good spirits," he said.

"This is a peaceful rally with no violence. The young and old are here. I'm sure Australians and Malaysians understand that this is a demonstration for free and fair elections."

12.32pm: Pasar Seni - Police form a human chain along Hang Kasturi Walk, a new pedestrian walkway at the side of Pasar Seni, despite some protesters having long passed through ahead of them via a side corridor.

The protesters facing the police wall are singing the national anthem. 

12:30pm: Pasar Seni - Pak Samad is seated on a mat behind a police line at the bridge linking Pasar Seni LRT to Dayabumi, reading his Quran.

When asked if he is being detained, a policeman replied, “He's resting. He took photographs for two hours just now, he is tired.”

When Malaysiakini calls out to the national laureate if he is under detention, he merely shrugs.

12.20am: A police bomb detector squad finds that the eight objects located at Dayabumi are not explosives. They turn out to be car spare parts inside yellow boxes.

12.14pm: Masjid Negara - Several big names are now at Masjid Negara - PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu, DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang and former tourism minister Abdul Kadir Sheik Fadzir.

NONE12.10pm: Jalan Sultan - After resting for about an hour, about 3,000 people who initially gathered at Jalan Sultan are now walking through Jalan Petaling. 

12:07pm: Jalan Tun Perak - About three FRU trucks and two water cannons are spotted at Dataran.

A group of 500 supporters from Jalan Pudu head towars Tun Perak shouting “Bersih” and “Stop Lynas”.

12.05pm: Jalan Tun Perak - Thousands are singing the national anthem, and some are waving state flags from Kedah and Terengganu.

12.05pm: Pasar Seni - 67-year-old Ng Boon Hong has come with his wife and children to support the call for clean and fair elections.

"My generation has failed. We did not do anything (for clean elections). Now the young have come out. We must support the young," said the man from Klang.

Slamming the authorities’ high-handed approach as behaving "like clowns", he urged the Election Commission to provide a level playing field for everybody in the elections and to stop using illegal foreigners as phantom voters.

12.03pm: Two hours before the Bersih 3.0 rally, there are already an estimated 35,000 protesters in different parts of the city center in Kuala Lumpur.

Pudu (crowd marched from KLCC) - 20,000
Pasar Seni (merged with crowd from Brickfields) - 10,000
Petaling Street - 3,000
Masjid Negara - 2,000

11.55am: Pasar Seni - The combined crowd at Pasar Seni now stands at over 10,000. They have now filled the parking lot in front of the Central Market stage and proceeds to sing the national anthem.

11.55am: Pasar Seni - The combined crowd now is estimated at 10,000. The parking lot is filled to the brim and people are breaking into impromptu rounds of the national anthem.

11.51am: Pasar Seni - The PAS Unit Amal (security unit) tells the protesters there to gather outside central market as the actual Bersih 3.0 rally will only begin at 2pm.

Spotted in the crowd are Bersih co-coordinator S Ambiga and PKR communication chief Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad.

11.50am: Dataran Merdeka - PKR deputy president Azmin Ali gives a short speech in front of thousands at the Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman junction, warning that the country belongs to the rakyat and not to foreigners.

He said with so many as those present today, toppling BN at the upcoming GE will be no problem. 

11.43am: Dataran Merdeka - PKR deputy president Azmin Ali's group has just joined the group at the Jalan Tun Perak - Jalan Taunku Abdul Rahman crowd. 

11.47am: Near Dataran Merdeka - In front of Bar Council, a group of protesters including women’s activist Irene Fernandez are singing a few songs, including 'Negaraku' and ‘Rasa Sayang’.

11:46am: Pasar Seni - The protesters marching from Brickfields have reached Central Market, sparking a round of cheering from their welcoming comrades.

"Reformasi, reformasi. Hidup bersih!" they shout.

The combined crowd is estimated at several thousands. 

11.40am: Pasar Seni - From the LRT towards HSBC Bank most of the shops are closed and streets empty, akin to a war zone or disaster area. Hundreds of Bersih supporters are in scattered groups. Some restaurants that are open are full of patrons in yellow T-shirts.

National laureate A Samad Said, popularly known as Pak Samad, arrives at Pasar Seni LRT and is posing for photographs using the police guarding the bridge linking the station to Dayabumi as a backdrop. The station remains operational but its token machines have malfunctioned.

11.38am: Dataran Merdeka - The crowd at the Jalan Tun Perak - Jalan Parlimen intersection, numbering in the thousands, are now marching along Jalan Kinabalu towards Masjid Negara.

11.35am: Pasar Seni - Around 20 queue up for their vendetta masks that an Occupy Dataran member is selling for RM10 each.

11.35am: Brickfields - Protesters join hands to form a human chain to break through the policemen’s cordon, and successfully march ahead without much resistance from the policemen.

11.30am: Brickfields - Some 1,000 people are attempting to march but there are stopped by about 60 police personnel at Jalan Tun Sambathan.

The group is now sitting down in front of the police and singing the national anthem.

11:32am: Jalan Tun Perak - Protesters begin their march towards Masjid Negara.

11:30am: Pasar Seni - A group of artists are performing under the Native Galaxy handycrafts shop, beating their drums while singing John Lennon's ‘Power to the People’.

11.25am: Jalan Tun Perak - The Himpunan Hijau 3.0 crowd has reached Menara Maybank, a stone's throw away from Dataran Merdeka.

Since the road to Dataran Merdeka has been cordoned off, the crowd is heading towards Pudu Sentral, the focal point of the Bersih rally last year.

11.20am: Dang Wangi - Two police trucks and a lorry bearing supplies drive past Lebuh Pasar Besar with supplies, provoking jeers from the crowd. Some try to stop the crowd from jeering, reminding them this is a peaceful protest.

Ironically trucks are forced to turn back when they run up to a barricade and barbed wire blockade.

11.19am: Masjid Negara - Nine police trucks just passed by Masjid Negara heading to Dataran Merdeka. They are greeted by the crowd with a rousing applause.

11.15am: Masjid India - A crowd grows outside the KLSE building.

11.15am: Masjid Negara - Four police trucks depart the area.

11.13am: Jalan P Ramlee - The Himpunan Hijau 3.0 group from KLCC is marching towards Jalan Raja Chulan, chanting Bersih slogans while some direct traffic.

The crowd in the city centre has now reached 20,000.

11.10am: Central Market - Some 20 Unit Amal officers have been assigned to protect Ambiga Sreenevasan. Also with her is steering committee members Subramaniam Pillay and Andrew Khoo.

Addressing the media, Khoo said Bersih will respect the court order barring them from Dataran Merdeka but said the police have acted beyond the court order it obtained.

"They've expanded their blockade to areas that are not covered in the court order," he said.

"I've never seen barb wires being rolled out in Kuala Lumpur, I've only seen them in countries like Pakistan... But these are war zones. I'm deeply shocked by the action of the police, preventing people's rights to peaceful assembly," he added.

11.10am: Dataran Merdeka - A 26-year-old IT consultant Wong Kai Xuan says he is very excited to join the Bersih protest.

The first time protester, who come with six friends, was seen taking photographs in front of the Bar Council headquarters.

"I am very excited until can't sleep last night. Many friends were the same, I saw them on Facebook even at 2.30am."

He also proudly introduce his surname is "Wong", which in Chinese means yellow, the colour of Bersih.

10.55am: Masjid Negara - PAS deputy chief Mohamad Sabu arrives at Masjid Negara and he is given a hero's welcome by the crowd.

10.54am: KLCC - Two individuals arrested after a crowd, estimated at 10,000, began marching towards Masjid Jamek.

They break through a wall of police at Jalan Ampang.

10.53am: Masjid India - Unit Amal members spearhead some 5,000 protesters to charge through a police human barricade at the intersection outside Public Bank, near the north end of the Dataran. 

10.51am: Three hours before the Bersih 3.0 rally, there are already an estimated 15,000 protesters in different parts of the city centre in Kuala Lumpur.

KLCC - 5,000
Jalan Sultan - 4,000
Masjid Jamek - 2,000
Masjid Negara - 1,000
Near Dataran Merdeka - 3,000

10.50am: Dataran Merdeka - A multi-racial crowd outside the Bar Council headquarters  are sloganeering and singing "Rasa sayang".

10.50am: Pasar Seni - Ambiga takes the stage as the nearly 600 crowd cheer her on. She leads them in chanting, "Bersih! Bersih!" as everyone raises their hands to make the number three sign in reference to Bersih 3.0.

Addressing members of the press, the lawyer appears upbeat about today's turnout.

"I see many people are still coming. The spirit is fantastic; even last night people gathered. The atmosphere is electric, I couldn't ask for more.

"I thank everybody, the rakyat, for coming together to uphold this noble cause for free and fair elections."

She reiterated that if the police does not permit protesters to enter Dataran Merdeka later, the protesters will just sit where they are to protest.

10.45am: Pasar Seni - The Occupy Dataran movement has set up a camp in front of Bar Council headquarters as a sign of protest, with some of their members wearing the vendetta mask.

A helicopter is seen circling above.

10:44am: Dataran Merdeka - At the Jalan Tun Perak-Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman intersection, another wheelchair-bound protester draws attention.

The 56-year-old lady, who wants to known only as Ani, said she was disabled after suffering a stroke. She said she arrived at 4am and was here to "uphold justice".

"If the FRU chase me, I won't run. I will ask them to carry me up (the polic truck) and carry me into the lock up.

10.40am: Masjid Negara - Ambiga Sreenevasan arrives and is seen walking towards Pasar Seni from the old train station.

NONE10.40am: KLCC - The Himpunan Hijau 3.0 crowd begins to hit the streets.

Committee chairperson Wong Tack and the committee members lead the 5,000-strong crowd on a march along Jalan Ampang towards the Australian High Commission.

10.34am: So far, no ‘red helmet’ FRU (riot police) personnel are seen in the city centre. Also there appeared that no water cannon trucks deployed for now.

10.31am: Tweet from PDRM - police found eight objects suspected to be explosives outside Menara Dayabumi.

Meanwhile, KL police announced in its Facebook that they have closed 58 roads in KL city from 6am onwards until further notice.

10.30am: Brickfields - The crowd here is estimated to be at 200 people after they disembarked from several busses.

Seri Setia state assemblymperson Nik Nazmi Nik Mat reminded the crowd that they are for a peaceful protest.

"Police won't be able to do anything on us because we can easily outnumber them," he said.

The crowd at the other side of the road has started chanting: "Asal bukan umno (Anything but Umno)" 

10.20am: Jalan Sultan - A music video shoot, directed by Pete Teo, is taking place outside the Yan Keng Benevolent Dramatic Association.

The title of the video is "Rasa sayang, Jalan Sultan". About 400 protesters are taking part in the shoot, singing the chorus. 

10.20am: Masjid Negara - About 100 people are listening to impromptu speeches being given in the compounds of the mosque.

10.19am: Brickfields - Protesters have started distribute balloons in the shape of popular computer game Angry Birds.

10.16am: Dataran Merdeka - The police form human wall near the Bar Council headquarters which has become a tourist spot of sorts with many people taking photographs.

10.15am: Bangsar - Bersih co-chairperson A Samad Said just left the Bangsar LRT station in a packed train. As he entered the coach, fellow passengers aplauded.

10.05am: Brickfields - Around 50 protesters sporting Bersih T-shirts has convened outside Old Town Coffee Shop at  Jalan Thambypillai.

According to some participants, they either stayed overnight at the nearby hotels or followed the crowd when they arrived at KL Sentral.

"I don't know how to go about in Brickfiedls actually. I only follow the others when I come out from train station," said Kelly Tui.

10.03am: Jalan Tun Perak - A carnival atmosphere permeates the rally, with one participant performing magic acts to cheer from the crowd at the Jalan Parliament-Jalan TAR intersection.

The crowd sitting by the roadside has swollen to 2,000, with some shouting “sit down” and “police, sit down”.

NONE10.03am: KLCC - Organisers distribute anti-Lynas leaflets to the crowd. One depicts Pahang Menteri Besar Adnan Yaakob with the words ‘Pahang Hitler’.

Most are dressed in the Himpunan Hijau 3.0 trademark green T-shirt with a yellow headband, or the yellow Bersih T-shirt with a green headband.

The 2,000 crowd are chanting slogans while the police look on.

10.04am: Pasar Seni
- There are two gathering points here, the Pasar Seni complex and Lebuh Pasar Besar.

Pasar Seni is seeing roughly 300 rallyers while at Lebuh Pasar Besar, the crowd grows to 200. Occupy Dataran activists brief the crowd on what to do in case of arrests.

A barricade with barbed wire has been set up across the bridge near the Bar Council headquarters to bar entry into Dataran. A multi-ethnic group of 200 are gathered there.

Spirits rise and the crowd cheers when a group of PAS supporters open up their Bersih banner in front of the police.

They shout, "Hidup Bersih,” “Hancur Umno," and "Turun Najib." (Long live Bersih, Down with Umno and Najib, step down)

10.00am: Jalan Sultan - Near the Yan Keng Benevolent Dramatic Association, we meet wheel-chair bound Lee Kwan Leong, who says he and ten other disabled persons will join the rally.

Lee, 51 , make handicrafts for a living. He says says this is his first time he is joining the demonstration and he hoped the government will save Jalan Sultan where he spent his childhood. He is also supportive of the anti-Lynas and Bersih cause.

Lee says he is not afraid of tear gas and water cannons.

"If our group been attacked, I will urge my friends to flee, while I will keep to the sidelines," says Lee, stressing that he can take care of himself.

9.57am: Central Market - A small crowd is busy studying a copy of the court order pasted on a lamp pole. The court order bars key Bersih steering committee memebrs from entering Dataran Merdeka.

9.48am: Dataran Merdeka - The Jalan Tun Perak-Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman intersection is a major gathering point with a crowd of about 3,000 people who are singing and chanting slogans.

There are hundreds of police but no sign of the FRU. 

9.45am: Jalan Sultan - At a KK mini-market, a general practitioner Dr Wong Fort Ping, 57, began singing the national anthem on his own, but hundreds joined in.

Wong, who later told the crowd that he had joined the first two Bersih rallies and quoted former US president John F Kennedy.

9:44am: Jalan Tun Perak - A man, whose name is Saw, sings in front of the crowd, receiving wild cheers. 

There are about 500 protesters at the intersection of Jalan TAR-Jalan Tun Perak-Jalan Raja-Jalan Parliament. 

A disabled man is seen giving speech in front of another group of protesters sitting near the intersection.

9.42am - Pasar Seni: 60 police officers have formed a line across Leboh Pudu, preventing motorists from entering Medan Pasar and Jalan Lebuh Pasar. Protesters on foot however are allowed to pass.

9.37am: KLCC - The Bukit Koman anti-cyanide committee members from Raub, Pahang are putting the banners and posters to voice their dissatisfaction over the Australian gold mining company which uses cyanide to extract gold.

The crowd size at KLCC had grown to 1,000 and their emotion is getting higher and higher.

9.36am: Jalan Sultan - A group of approximately 50 police personnel form a human barricade at Jalan Sultan and Jalan Hang Jebat to stop public from heading to Yan Keng Benevolent Dramatic Association where the shooting for a music video for the 'Protect the Jalan Sultan' theme song is take place 10am, directed by Pete Teo.

9.35am: Masjid Negara - Road heading to Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin from Jalan Travers closed.

There are about 500 protesters gathered here along with PAS Unit Amal who are cladded in maroon. More are coming from the nearby KTM railway station to join them.

About 50 police officers and a police truck are seen. 

9.32am: Public transport update - Tweets from RapidKL, service is normal, all roads leading to KL city are closed.

"Buses will drop passengers at LRT stations nearest to KL city. No buses will go into KL city."

9.25am: Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman (TAR) - Hundreds of bersih supporters has been gathered at the back lane of Jalan TAR near Masjid India, many of them wearing Bersih or yellow T-shirts.

There a group of young people who have set up a stall here to sell Bersih and 'Free Education' T-shirts.

Jalan TAR and Jalan Parliament are closed by the police. While about 100 police officers form a human wall to barricade Jalan TAR, in front of Sogo, the protesters are able to evade the police by using the back lanes to go to Masjid India and Jalan Tun Perak.

People are hanging around, sitting in front of shop and chatting while waiting for the protest to begin.

9.21am: Jalan Tun Perak - An estimated 1,000 people are gathering along the empty road which has been closed by the police. 

Many are sitting along the five-foot sidewalk and standing in the middle of the road.

920am: Masjid Jamek LRT - A group of Bersih protesters, clad in yellow, are gathering outside the LRT station, some are sitting by the roadside.

The road leading to Jalan Tun Perak and Bangkok Bank is closed to all vehicles. There are about 50 police personnel in the area, backed by three police trucks and a van.

9.18am: Pasar Seni - Some 100 police officers have lined behind the barricade on Lebuh Pasar Besar.

The crowd in front of the roadblock has swelled to close to 100. They are watching activists staging a musical performance.

9.16am: Jalan Petaling - At the entrance of Lok Ann hotel, a girl clad in Bersih T-shirt gives flowers to a police officer name Yap, urging him to support Bersih. He keeps shaking his head and says "buyao, buyao" ('no' in Mandarin), but the crowd and other police officers applaud.

The police officers are seen guarding a few key locations, including the Yan Keng Benevolent Dramatic Association at the junction of Jalan Sultan and Hang Jebat.

9.15am: KLCC - The entrance of KLCC facing the Public Bank building and the main entrance to the Twin Towers are sealed with steel bars.

Indera Mahkota MCA Youth chief David Choi, despite facing disciplinary action in the party for his support for Himpunan Hijau, is seen among the crowd.

The Indera Mahkota MCA Youth division is the only party division which strongly oppose the controversial Lynas rare earth plant which located in Gebeng, Pahang.

The protesters, which are now 500-strong after another group which was in the KLCC park joined them, started chanting "Stop Lynas".

About 100 police officers form a human wall to prevent the crowd from getting near to the entrance.

8.56am: Pasar Seni - A pocket of some 40 yellow-clad Bersih supporters are camped in front of a roadblock on Jalan Lebuh Besar in front of Bar Council's building. They have decorated the barb wires and barricades with Bersih, anti-Lynas and Occupy Dataran banners.

8.51am: Police set up roadblock at Jalan Duta heading into Jalan Parlimen - all cars are stopped from entering Jalan Parlimen.

Police also erected a roadblock at the junction of MRR1 and Jalan Sultan Salahuddin. No vehicles allowed to use this road to go into the city centre.

8.48am: Sogo shopping complex - The intersection in front of Sogo is closed. Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, the main road leading to Dataran Merdeka, is blocked. No traffic is allowed to pass.

There are about 150 police personnel in the area, along with two police trucks. The police form a human wall in front of Sogo.

8.37am: Pasar Seni - Pockets of yellow clad people scattered around, many having breakfast while others are just milling around, numbering about 50.

Three busloads and two truckloads with about 200 police officers arrive in the shopping complex.

8.32am: KLCC - There are about 100 Himpunan Hijau 3.0 protesters gathered at the KLCC entrance, opposite Avenue K.

KLCC is the gathering point for the Himpunan Hijau 3.0 rally before they march to Masjid Jamek at noon to join Bersih 3.0. Most of those in the crowd are wearing the trademark Himpunan Hijau green T-shirts.

There are more than 150 uniformed police personnel in the area, some of them are being brief by their superior. However, no FRU trucks are spotted so far.

8am: Jalan Petaling - There is already a crowd of 300 in Chinatown with participants having trouble to find a place to eat as the few hawker centres in the area are full to the brim.

An Alam Flora truck shows up to remove rubbish from the roadside, prompting the crowd to shout passionately, "Bersih, Bersih".

There is a group of artists playing music with their musical instruments, turning the 428 rally into a carnival, and attracting a man from the crowd to dance to the music.

7.34am: Police have erected roadblocks in major roads leading into the Kuala Lumpur city centre in the bid to stop protesters from congregating in Dataran Merdeka at 2pm today.

Roadblocks are reported in Ampang Elevated Highway, Jalan Tun Razak, Jalan Mahameru, Jalan Pudu, Jalan Bangsar and Jalan Tun Sambathan.

Bersih 3.0 organisers are advising participants to get to the city early and to take public transport. However, expect some of the train stations in the city centre, especially Masjid Jamek, Pasar Seni, Hang Tuah, KL Sentral and KLCC, to be closed later today.

Tens of thousands are expected to take to the streets of Kuala Lumpur in a rally dubbed 'Bersih 3.0' to demand, among others, electoral reform and the resignation of the Election Commission.

There was a spontaneous rally late last night near Dataran Merdeka, which drew a crowd of 2,000.

Protesters are gathering at six core locations, namely Jalan Sultan, Pasar Seni, Masjid India, Masjid Negara, Brickfields and KLCC with other additional points around the vicinity.

Bersih 3.0 protesters at KLCC are expected to be joined by Himpunan Hijau 3.0 supporters which will first march to the Australian High Commission to protest the RM700 million rare-earth processing plant in Gebeng, Kuantan by Australian-based company Lynas before proceeding to Dataran Merdeka.

Protesters are already gathering at 8am at Jalan Sultan to support a pre-rally video shoot opposing the MyRapid Transit (MRT) project which will cut through the historical street.

All protesters will eventually move towards Dataran Merdeka, a venue which the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) has banned for demonstrations and have pre-empted the rally by sealing it off with barricades and barb wires.

Kuala Lumpur police chief Mohamad Salleh had also announced yesterday that demonstrators may gather at their locations but barred them from marching, an order protesters are expected to defy.

Police have also obtained a court order barring the public from entering Dataran Merdeka.

Bersih 3.0 organiser had yesterday said they will respect the court order but will try to get "as close as possible" to the iconic square and still harbours hope that the police will allow a last minute goodwill gesture for demonstrators to occupy the site for a sit-in protest.