The Joint Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG) has condemned the sexist and racist harassment of former Bar Council chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan.
JAG also referred to a blog post which it claimed implicitly referred to Ambiga as a pendatang (immigrant) and associated her with prostitution.
"These statements are a great disrespect towards women and the Indian Malaysian community," it added in a statement this evening.
JAG was referring to an article in Malaysia Today by Raja Petra Raja Kamaruddin titled "The tale of Indian and White women".
The article was a response to court documents filed by Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown which mentioned Ambiga as a source for one of the former's articles.
JAG said women human rights defenders often face harassment and intimidation, which was enabled by sexism and misogyny.
"Such harassment reflects a broader pattern of violence against women in our society.
"We urge all parties to stop silencing and harassing women human rights defenders - and to uphold decorum and respect in our society," said the group.
Meanwhile, several NGOs and opposition parties today lodged a police report against Raja Petra for allegedly making sexist and racist remarks against Ambiga.
After lodging the police report in Petaling Jaya today, veteran women's rights activist Ivy Josiah said Raja Petra's article was indicative of the pattern of attacks against female activists in the country.
"Every time a thinking woman criticises the government, she is subject to sexist attacks, threats and harassment," she said, according to Free Malaysia Today.