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'It's best for non-Muslims to avoid red shirt rally'

It is best for non-Muslims to avoid being in Kuala Lumpur on Sept 16, where a demonstration to counter the recent Bersih rally is expected to be held.

Gabungan NGO-NGO Melayu chairperson Jamal Md Yunos said this when asked to comment on messages circulating telling non-Muslims to keep clear from the city centre on that date.

“I think that would be best,” Jamal told Malaysiakini when asked on the matter.

The Sungai Besar Umno division chief pointed out how his group, known to be clad in red shirts, had avoided coming to the Bersih rally.

“These kinds of rallies are demonstrations. So those who come may be over-emotional.

“If they see a rival group during the rally, of course there will be provocation.

“And when there is provocation, we are concerned that unwanted incidents will occur,” he said.

However, Jamal ( photo ) said it was clear that the message of the rally was that it would be a peaceful one.

“We don’t encourage people to bring weapons or machetes.

“Posters being spread of shedding the blood of the Chinese are not our message. Maybe there are those with malicious intention who intend to provoke,” he said.

Police have the experience

Jamal believes that the experience and maturity of the police would enable the men in blue to face whatever situation that may arise.

Asked whether it was okay for a Chinese Muslims to join the rally, he said it was up to the individual concerned.

“It’s up to that person, this is a Malay rally. But we don’t prevent anyone from joining.

“If the Chinese, too, want to come, what can we do? Just come, then. It’s not like there will be doors and participants have to provide tickets to enter,” he said.

Jamal said anyone could participate in the rally as long as they follow the rules and laws.

“If they go against the law, then they should be prepared to face the music,” he said.

The rally planned to be held at the Bukit Bintang and Petaling Street areas, is meant to counter the Bersih 4 rally held on Aug 29 and 30.

It is backed by 500 Malay NGOs to show Malay unity and defend Malay dignity, Jamal had said.

The group expects 300,000 people to turn up for the rally.

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