Newspaper is politically biased, says opposition leader in gay slander case

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim tells court Utusan Malaysia is mostly owned by ruling political party

Newspaper is politically biased, says opposition leader in gay slander case
13 August 2012

The leader of the opposition in Malaysia Anwar Ibrahim, in court to clear his name from the ‘defamation’ that he supports gay rights, has accused the top-selling Malay language newspaper in the country of political bias.

Anwar said the majority of shareholders and the board of directors of Utusan Malaysia are connected to the UMNO, the biggest political party in the Barisan Nasional coalition that rules the country, the Malaysian Insider reports.

Under cross-examination from the newspaper’s defence lawyer Firoz Hussein, Anwar said UNMO is listed in Utusan’s 2010 annual report as owning 49.77% of shares, and said that other shareholders were also linked to the party.

Anwar is seeking 50 million Malaysia Ringgit ($16 million, €13 million) in damages and an injunction to stop Utusan Malaysia reporting that he said the country’s laws criminalising homosexual acts are ‘archaic’ and ‘not relevant’ in a BBC interview.

The politician himself was cleared of sodomy in court in January, an accusation that has followed him for years and that he says was politically motivated.

Earlier in the trial Anwar said that gay people should be discriminated against, a sentiment that was heavily criticised by Human Rights Watch.

The trial continues in the High Court in Kuala Lumpur.

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

Go Out to Swim to get fit

Go Out to Swim to get fit

Aquaphobe Matthew Jenkin is tempted back into the pool by the prospect of achieving his Olympian goal and the promise of a party
No thumbnail available

Remembering the gay and African American Holocaust survivors

The story of ‘lesbian’ trumpet player Valaida Snow, arrested during a visit to Europe, shows how the Nazis harassed and persecuted black and gay people
No thumbnail available

Majority of Maryland voters in favor of gay marriage

54% of Marylanders in pre-ballot poll in favor of keeping new gay marriage law
No thumbnail available

African Christians will be killed if we back gay marriage, says Anglican head

If the Church of England announced support for same-sex marriage, it could lead to a 'massacre' of Christians in Nigeria, South Sudan and other African countries
The Veronicas implore Australia PM to legalize gay marriage

The Veronicas implore Australia PM to legalize gay marriage

'It’s time to live in a country that recognizes all people as equal'
REVIEW: The Perryvale – Forest Hill, London

REVIEW: The Perryvale – Forest Hill, London

You couldn't ask for a better neighborhood restaurant – a huge boost for the area.
No thumbnail available

Parrot loves Beth Ditto, Carla Bruni

The Gossip lead singer join's France's first lady in an ad campaign for 'the most advanced headphones'
No thumbnail available

What the second LGBTI Pride feels like for Portuguese in Braga

Portugal’s third-largest city gears up for its second Gay Pride parade. Have things changed since last year?
No thumbnail available

WNBA stars Brittney Griner and Glory Johnson get engaged

'I became the happiest person on this earth'
No thumbnail available

Feces sent to French mayor after marrying gay couple

Hélène Mandroux has been sent threats in the mail from marriage equality opponents after she married a gay and lesbian couple