Government urged to immediately release Natalie Lowrey without conditions

SHAH ALAM, 27 June: The Federal Government has been urged to immediately release Australian, Natalie Lowrey, who has been detained without grounds for the past six days.

In a joint statement, the Voice of the Malaysian People (SUARAM) and 31 non-governmental organisations (NGO) described the extended detention as a deliberate abuse of power.


They said that Natalie and other participants should not have been detained on any charges because they merely exercised their rights to freedom of expression and freedom to peacefully assemble in protest.

“They merely exercised their rights to freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful assembly in protest against a rare earth plant that poses great risk to the health and environment of the people in Kuantan.

“Their peaceful action is perfectly legitimate and should not be criminalised.

“We call for the immediate and unconditional release of her,” they said.

On June 22, Natalie and 15 local activists were arrested and detained for holding a peaceful protest against the Lynas project in Gebeng Pahang.

SUARAM and the other urged the Federal Government to abolish the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012, which, among others, bans foreigners from organising or participating in peaceful assemblies.

“We call on the Malaysian government to heed the increased international calls for the immediate and unconditional release of Natalie Lowrey.

“We call on the National Human Rights Commission (SUHAKAM) to conduct a visit to Kuantan police headquarters to ensure the well-being and the rights of Natalie Lowrey are protected,” they said.

Since its launch on June 23, an international petition has already garnered more than 14,000 signatures internationally in just five days.

The petition was submitted to the Home Minister, Zahid Hamidi, for attention and action.


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