Malaysiakini Letter

Be firm Pakatan Harapan

Civil Society Organisation  |  Published:  |  Modified:

LETTER | International Criminal Court (ICC), another international instrument hoped to be the final defensive line to the victims of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and crimes of aggression was withdrawn from the accession of ratification by the very government who was deemed as the torchbearers of democratic reforms.

We the undersigned civil society organisations are appalled with the U-turns of Pakatan Harapan-led government which repetitively failed to maintain a strong position to the questions of human rights and humanity, easily giving in to the voices of “vested interests”.

The treaty-based international criminal court was established in 2002, solely aimed to end impunity against perpetrators of the most serious crimes like genocides and crimes against humanity. 

It is unbelievable and morally despicable that any individual or groups would oppose and put a stop to this noble endeavour.

The withdrawal of Malaysia, a country that has strongly stood in solidarity with the sufferings of minorities in countries like Myanmar, Bosnia and Palestine from the ICC rings hollow to Malaysia’s condemnation towards the atrocities against the Rohingyas as we do not have a moral positioning and international instruments to even suggest that a crime against humanity has occurred.

Despite having the government's machinery at its disposal, the Harapan government decided to surrender the aspirations of a New Malaysia to provocations spelled out by immature parties instead of disseminating the correct narrative to the people.

This is a lesson the government should have quickly grasped soon after the racially stirred up Icerd (International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination) commotion.

There should not be another retraction of ratifications, laws and policies due to prejudicial religious and racial politics.

It is important to note that the treaty does not impact the state rulers as Their Majesties' role and function are very different in the army, the police or the execution of foreign policy.

In the context of Malaysia, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is the head of state but not the head of government. Therefore, His Majesty is the formal but not the functional head of state.

Our system of constitutional monarchy is such that His Majesty is not operationally responsible for any military decisions.

Hence any allegations that the signing of such treaties would impede the powers of the monarch is false. 

Furthermore, Islam or the Malay position would not be threatened in the signing and ratification of this treaty.

We would like to condemn any attempts made by any parties to undemocratically unseat the democratically elected government and prime minister.

The government today is moving Malaysia and its peoples towards the path of a maturing democracy, which must be given justice to its genuine intentions of reform.

This statement is endorsed by:

1. Agora Society

2. Aliran

3. Beyond Borders

4. Childline Malaysia

5. Eliminating Deaths n Abuse in Custody Together (EDICT)

6. Foreign Spouses Support Group

7. G25

8. Health Equity Initiatives

9. Jaringan Kampung Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia (JKOASM)

10. KRYSS

11. Monsoons Malaysia

12. MyPJ

13. North South Initiatives

14. Pergerakan Tenaga Akademik Malaysia (GERAK)

15. Pusat KOMAS

16. Sahabat Rakyat

17. Save Rivers

18. Sisters in Islam

19. Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)

20. The Kuala Lumpur & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH)


The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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