03 Nov '11, 3pm

Malaysian police ban gay rights festival

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian police said they will prevent an annual gay rights festival, with organisers slamming the move Thursday as proof of the repression homosexuals face in the socially conservative Muslim country. Deputy national police chief Khalid Abu Bakar said the decision to halt the three-year-old "Seksualiti Merdeka" (Sexuality Freedom) festival set for November 9-13 came after Muslims called for it to be banned. "Police will take action... to prevent any function relating to the programme," Khalid was quoted as saying by the national Bernama news agency. He said Muslim and other groups had protested that "the programme could create disharmony, enmity and disturb public order." A senior police official confirmed the decision to AFP. Festival organiser Pang Khee Pik said the announcement marked a "very tragic day for Malaysia." "We are aware that homophobic police...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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