Press Statement
Anwar Ibrahim must stop using the LGBT community as a political ‘punching-bag’
3 October 2018

We refer to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s recent claims and insinuations that the public, and particularly majority Muslims are being forced to accept ‘LGBT culture or lifestyle’.

It is unfortunate that he is using the LGBT community as pawns to a political agenda; it reeks of the fear-mongering tactic often used by the government of old.

Not only does he denigrate and publicly oppose the LGBT’s plea for acceptance, but Anwar also rallies the public to reject them as equal citizens with rights to free expression.

His words simply foster further hatred towards the already vulnerable LGBT community.

It is complete nonsense that the public are being forced to accept the LGBT community lifestyle, as claimed by Anwar. When did they do so?

All that is asked for by the LGBT is for the authorities and the intolerant to stop persecuting and vilifying them.

In actual fact, the Malay Muslim majority holds all the cards in this country. It is ironic then for Anwar to insinuate that the Malay identity or Islam is in any way compromised or threatened for simply having people of different beliefs and identity lead their lives without harassment.

The LGBT have to live in hiding or risk the wrath of both the public and the law. They have been disenfranchised and suffered for far too long.

The core of the demands by the LGBT community is for equality and justice for all, the same demands that were made when Anwar himself was targeted and persecuted by his political opponents.

In fact, Anwar of all people, should have been able to empathize with this marginalized and hunted community.

Whether he wants to accept them or not, the LGBT community exists in Malaysia; and as fellow Malaysians, it is their birthright to live here, free from persecution. He and others similarly inclined must stop using them as a ‘punching-bag’ to advance any political agenda.

Released by:
Zaid Malek
Lawyers for Liberty