In beer fest and royal visit, Lim sees parallels in cops’ role

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Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said that despite an Islamic State fighter from Singapore singling out a member of the British royal family, Prince Charles is expected to proceed with his royal visit to Southeast Asia, which includes a stop in Penang.

Lim stressed that terror threats should neither disrupt daily lives nor Charles' visit – and in the same vein, beer festivals, which police had claimed were potential terror targets.

"The authorities must realise that if an event is cancelled because of a terror threat issued by a terrorist group, then the terrorist group wins, because it has achieved its purpose of disrupting our daily lives and lifestyles.

"Similarly, if an official visit is cancelled because of a terror threat, this would be a humiliation for the authorities who are not seen as capable of maintaining public security, law and order," he said.

Lim had noted that a 39-year-old Islamic State fighter from Singapore, Meghat Shahdan bin Abdul Samad, had challenged Prince Harry to fight the group in the Middle East.

However, inspector-general of police Mohamad Fuzi Harun said the police have not received any word of a terror threat about Charles’ Southeast Asian tour, but stressed that security will be tight.

The Better Beer Festival, which was supposed to take place on Oct 6, was cancelled after police refused to provide an endorsement, claiming that it could become the target of militants.

Police also refused to provide an endorsement for similar events in Klang Valley on terror-related grounds.

Lim, who is also DAP secretary-general, said he was confident police could avert any such threat.

"DAP believes that the police, when allowed to do its professional job, has the ability to contain and ensure that any terrorist group in Malaysia cannot just simply threaten and hold Malaysians to ransom with impunity.

"If we subject ourselves to such undisclosed terror threats and change our daily lifestyles, we will not only be surrendering our freedom, but perhaps also our sovereignty as a nation," he said.

Prince Charles is expected to visit Penang from Nov 6 to 8.

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