International Women’s Day: Recognizing One Woman’s Fight for LGBT Rights in Malaysia

Source: Human Rights Campaign


Lyana Khairuddin – pic taken from The Star Online

hrc-general-blog1600In honor of International Women’s Day, HRC Global is spotlighting women who are advancing equality around the globe, including Lyana Khairuddin, a self-described “HIV & AIDS advocate” from Malaysia. Lyana, a bisexual, Muslim woman who served as an HRC global fellow last fall, is working in Malaysia to fight discrimination and the spread of HIV & AIDS in her country.

“Navigating activism around LGBT rights is an uphill struggle,” she says. “There is a multidimensional complexity to discussing these issues, especially when there is an increasingly restricted space for expression. “

Lyana’s work in Malaysia is not easy. Many human rights challenges are plaguing Malaysia, including the right to gender expression and unfortunate incidences of violence and discrimination. Read more

399 websites blocked by MCMC this year

Source: FMT News

Government working with Facebook and Google to curb social media abuses.

KUALA LUMPUR: Since Jan 1 this year, 22 netizens were probed and 399 websites were blocked by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), says Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Jailani Johari.

Speaking during the question-and-answer session in the Dewan Rakyat today, Jailani said the government was now working with Facebook and Google to curb social media abuses.

Putrajaya had also formed a commission to focus on misuse of the Internet, chaired by the minister, Salleh Said Keruak.

“This is due to new challenges that have arisen with regards to the different interpretations of national laws and laws of the countries hosting these platform providers,” explained Jailani.

Read more

US Bar: Sedition Act more restrictive than others

Source: FMT News

The American Bar’s Centre for Human Rights, in its report, says the application of Malaysia’s Sedition Act violates international standards and is far more restrictive than other Commonwealth nations with similar laws.

PETALING JAYA: The American Bar Association’s (ABA) Centre for Human Rights has stated that the application of Malaysia’s Sedition Act violates international standards and is far more restrictive than other Commonwealth nations with similar laws to reign in seditious behaviour.

“Malaysia’s Sedition Act is far more onerous than international norms proscribe and fellow Commonwealth countries currently employ,” the report stated.

The statement coincided with ABA’s report titled, “Malaysia’s Sedition Act Unlawfully Restricts Free Expression.”

The statement was also released in anticipation of the Kuala Lumpur High Court’s hearing on the constitutional challenge to the Sedition Act of 1948 slated for March 9, 2016. Read more

Unicef Malaysia: Child marriages rob boys, girls of their dignity

Source: The Star Online

PETALING JAYA: Child marriages rob boys and girls of their rights and dignity, says Unicef Malaysia.

“Whether it happens to a girl or a boy, child marriage robs children of their childhood, their rights and their dignity.

“Child marriage, which frequently inhibits a child’s basic rights to health, education and protection from harm, is condemned in international conventions, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which Malaysia acceded to 21 years ago,” it said in a statement on Tuesday.

Unicef said young brides are often isolated, removed from immediate families, taken out of school and denied interaction with their peers and communities, adding that this puts girls at risk of early and unwanted pregnancies, posing life-threatening consequences.

“Child marriage, as so rightly put by the Minister of Women, Family and Community Development Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim a couple of weeks ago, is a serious violation of human rights that impacts all aspects of a child’s life, especially girls,” said Unicef.

Read more

From the glass ceiling to a carpet of shards — Ban Ki-Moon

Source: The Malay Mail Online


MARCH 8 — As a boy growing up in post-war Korea, I remember asking about a tradition I observed: Women going into labour would leave their shoes at the threshold and then look back in fear. “They are wondering if they will ever step into those shoes again,” my mother explained.

More than a half-century later, the memory continues to haunt me. In poor parts of the world today, women still risk death in the process of giving life.

Maternal mortality is one of many preventable perils. All too often, female babies are subjected to genital mutilation. Girls are attacked on their way to school. Women’s bodies are used as battlefields in wars. Widows are shunned and impoverished.

We can only address these problems by empowering women as agents of change. Read more

Taking stock of the state of women in Malaysia — Awam

Source: The Malay Mail Online

MARCH 8 — On International Women’s Day (IWD) this year, we at the All Women’s Action Society (Awam) take a moment to take stock of the state of women in Malaysia.

There are those who claim that Malaysian women have been granted equal rights and equal opportunities, that there is no further work to be done because we have achieved that solid vision of gender equality.

We question such claims in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Equality is a continuous struggle and we have found that women in Malaysia seem to be on the losing end of this struggle over the past few years. Read more

Suhakam seeks gender equality legislation [updated]

Source: The Star Online

Suhakam Chairman Tan Sri Hasmy Agam - TRP file pic

Suhakam Chairman Tan Sri Hasmy Agam – TRP file pic

PETALING JAYA: The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) is urging the Government to put in place gender equality legislation in order to improve and promote equality for both men and women.

In a statement on Tuesday to mark the 2016 International Women’s Day, its chairman Tan Sri Hasmy Agam said that although Malaysia has made significant progress towards gender equality in recent years, particularly in areas such as education, gender stereotyping and roles are still common and well integrated into the society.

“Accordingly, the Commission recommends that the Government put in place gender equality legislation that aims to improve and promote equality for both women and men,” he said.   Read more

First Ladies: 12 Malaysian women who smashed the glass ceiling – Rubin Khoo

Source: Prestige


In conjunction with International Women’s Day, Prestige Malaysia pays tribute to 12 women who broke barriers, achieving firsts in their respective industries.  


Tan Sri Dr. Zeti Akthar Aziz

Tan Sri Dr. Zeti Akthar Aziz

In May 2000, Dr. Zeti became the first woman governor of Bank Negara, after playing an integral role during the Asian Financial Crisis in the late 1990s. A notable figure in the international community, Dr. Zeti is the daughter of Royal Professor Ungku Aziz. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Universiti Malaya before proceeding to the Wharton School, The University of Pennsylvania, to complete a PhD in monetary and international economics, carrying out pioneering work on capital flows and its implications for monetary policy as part of her dissertation.

Last year she received the Wharton Dean’s Medal, the School’s highest honour, to a Penn alumna who has had a tremendous economic impact on the Asia region and beyond. When awarding the medal, Wharton dean Geoffrey Garrett paid tribute to the Central Bank Governor, saying that Dr. Zeti had successfully navigated the Malaysian economy through more than one financial crisis. Read more

Cracks show in civil society as activists differ over Dr M’s ‘Citizens’ Declaration’

Source: The Malay Mail Online

On Friday, old enemies in politics and human rights activists banded with Tun Dr Mahathir (pic) to push for Datuk Seri Najib Razak to be replaced. ― Picture by Saw Siow Feng

On Friday, old enemies in politics and human rights activists banded with Tun Dr Mahathir (pic) to push for Datuk Seri Najib Razak to be replaced. ― Picture by Saw Siow Feng

KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 ― Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s “Citizens’ Declaration” may have made strange bedfellows of old political enemies from Barisan Nasional (BN) and the opposition but civil society does not appear entirely united in their support for the initiative.

The rights groups and activists who signed the declaration have said they were willing to put aside old hostilities to align themselves with Dr Mahathir for the sake of removing Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak from office.

Some activists, however, have rejected the declaration and sounded warning bells over the consequences of pairing up with a leader they hold responsible for the very system of governance they want changed. Read more