Muslim NGOs to observe Malaysia’s session in UN

Source: The Star Online

KUALA LUMPUR: A group of Muslim non-governmental organisations is heading for the United Nations to observe the review of the Malaysian Government’s human rights record. The Human Rights Council’s (HRC) Universal Periodic Review (UPR) for Malaysia is set for Oct 24, four years after the first in 2009.

Muslim Lawyers’ Association vice-president Azril Mohd Amin said the delegation comprised observers from the coalition of Muslim NGOs in the UPR process (MuslimUPRo). Azril, who is leading the delegation, said there would be 17 going.

In a statement on MuslimUPRo’s Facebook page, Azril said Wisma Putra had, for the first time, invited Muslim NGOs for a consultation in preparing Malaysia’s national report to the HRC. He said MuslimUPRo wished to ensure that proposals submitted by Malaysia were “properly based on syariah laws and the Federal Constitution”.

Azril said the UPR process must not be a technical review of the human rights situation of any particular nation. He said the UPR should only give a general picture and member countries should be aware that peer review cannot replace the expertise of specialists.

He said it was only fair that Malaysia, as an Organisation of Islamic Countries member, got the opportunity to voice its evaluation of declarations like the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam. He said syariah-specific and intra-faith issues should be debated academically among Islamic countries with syariah experts and scholars of Islamic jurisprudence. He said criticism of syariah laws should not be debated openly by non-Muslims or those with only a secular human rights background as they negated the role of religion – The Star Online


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