Sunday, July 10, 2011

750 in Melbourne kickstart Global Bersih rally

As the police locked down Kuala Lumpur, Malaysians worldwide started their respective peaceful rallies in support of Bersih 2.0's call for free and fair elections with up to 30 cities reportedly involved.
Melbourne Bersih 2.0In Melbourne, Australia, the crowd at Federation Square has reached 750, reported the latest tweet from the Bersih Oz Twitter page.
Unlike the rally in Kuala Lumpur that saw heavy-handed police action, the rallyers are greeted with friendly police forces.
"The police and Federal Square security greeted us, and commended us for organising a peaceful rally," tweeted one participant.
The gathering started around 9am local time with around 30 people bearing placards in support of free and fair elections and singing 'Negara Ku'.

Melbourne Bersih 2.0By noon the rally was full swing, with Ambiga masks being distributed for the participants to wear.

“Ambiga masks now being distributed, we are all Ambiga!” reads one tweet.

It is reported that the rally has drawn Australian TV coverage.

Speakers who have addressed the crowd so far include the member of parliament for Clayton and Sonia Randhawa from the Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ).
Meanwhile in Perth, Australia, 150 Malaysians have reportedly gathered in front of the Malaysian consulate singing, chanting and cheering.
bersih sydneyOver 300 gathered in Sydney (right) at the Town Hall at around 2pm.
In Adelaide, about 150 people participated in the city's Bersih event.
Meanwhile in neighbouring New Zealand, a mini rally reportedly kicked off in Christchurch, New Zealand, at the University of Canterbury at around 10.30am local time.
KL police violence protested
In Seoul, about 30 Malaysians living in South Korea rallied to support a simultaneous protest back home that Malaysian riot police had tried to cull by firing tear gas and water cannons.

Bersih Korea"We demand free and fair elections. Release all detainees," chanted protesters at the Gwanghwamun intersection in the heart of Seoul (left).

Wearing yellow T-shirts that are still banned in Malaysia, the protesters, mostly Malaysian students and workers living in the South Korean capital, waved banners and took turns in delivering speeches calling for election reform in Malaysia.

"We strongly condemn the crackdown," Thency Gunasekaran, a spokesperson of Bersih 2.0 Korea, told AFP as the violent events unfolded in Malaysia.

The rally in Seoul was part of a global movement named Bersih ("clean") 2.0.

"The crackdowns that have been happening clearly show that the Malaysian government is very much disregarding very fundamental principles of what a democracy should be," she said.

"They are moving very far away from what a democracy should be."
'Hong Kong cops commendable'
NONEIn Hong Kong, about 80 Malaysians marched through the city's central district today in solidarity with the movement.

Dressed in the trademark yellow T-shirts, the group in Hong Kong chanted slogans and submitted a memorandum to the Malaysian consulate.

“We, Malaysians residing in Hong Kong, support Bersih 2.0's call for free and fair elections,” spokesman Brandon Tan said.
He also condemned the violence by the Malaysian police and said he was “very upset” over the mass arrests.

bersih bangkok“They should learn from the Hong Kong police.
"They escorted us, helped us and gave us guidance as we marched through the city,” said the 36-year-old.
Another participant from Hong Kong also commented on the Global Bersih Facebook, "A big thank you to the HK police; I wonder when we can have such an efficient and people-friendly police force back in our homeland."
In Bangkok, a group of Bersih supporters demonstrated outside the Malaysian embassy (left).
In Taipei, about 300 Malaysian students gathered for 90 minutes in solidarity with Bersih and ended their rally with a rendition of Negaraku.
Yesterday an international network of Malaysians supporting Bersih 2.0 announced that 24 cities worldwide from Osaka to Los Angeles are rallying along with Kuala Lumpur for free and fair elections.

Source: Here

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