Malaysia: Thousands gather for Bersih 4 rally, urge PM to quit
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Malaysia: Thousands gather for Bersih 4 rally, urge PM to quit

Thousands of Malaysians wearing yellow T-shirts and blowing horns are gathering in Kuala Lumpur for a big rally to demand the resignation of embattled Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Some local news outlets put the crowd gathering in central Kuala Lumpur as large as 20,000 as the really kicked off at 2pm local time. It is scheduled to run until midnight Sunday.

The crowds were undeterred by a heavy police presence after authorities declared the rally illegal, blocked the organizer’s website and banned yellow attire and the logo of Bersih, the coalition for clean and fair election that’s behind the protest.

Gatherings were also taking place in Kuching and Kota Kinabalu, as well as in cities around the world.

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) said Thursday that it was blocking websites which “promote, spread information about and encourage people to join the Bersih 4.0 demonstration” because the event’s protestors “threaten national stability”.

Najib has been fighting for political survival after leaked documents in July showed he received some $700 million in his private accounts from entities linked to indebted state fund 1MDB. He says the money was a donation from the Middle East.


Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. Pic: AP.

Najib also has fired his deputy and four other Cabinet members who opposed him, as well as the attorney general investigating him.

Bersih 4.0’s five demands are: Free and fair elections; A transparent government; The right to demonstrate; Strengthening the parliamentary democracy system; Saving the national economy.

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Additional reporting from Associated Press