‘Don’t fan religious and racial issues’

PUTRAJAYA: Any attempt to set the people against one another or raise the racial and religious “temperature” in the country will not be tolerated, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said he had directed security forces to monitor the situation closely to prevent people from creating trouble.

The unity government, he said, remains firm in defending the Federal Constitution which upholds Islam as the religion of the federation while giving space and freedom for other religions to be practised.

“If issues (on religion and race) arise, resolve them properly so there won’t be any animosity, misunderstanding or prejudice,” he told a press conference after chairing the Cabinet meeting here.

In recent days, there have been several issues over the Mentega Terbang movie, which saw death threats to cast members, and claims of conversions after an NGO organised visits to houses of worship.

It has been reported that there will also be a “Malay Proclamation” rally tomorrow, with former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as one of the key speakers.

Saying that there were attempts by certain quarters to fan racial and religious sentiments, Anwar added that no one should exploit these issues.

“If the actions become excessive and cause disturbances, the security authorities will act firmly,” he said, according to Bernama.

Anwar said instances of breach of regulations which seemed to touch on racial sensitivities should be settled properly through discussions, adding that the situation is under control.

He said his Malaysia Madani-oriented government has set a clear policy of defending good values and morals to unite the multiracial and multireligious population.

“So, irresponsible statements are not acceptable because we cannot deny the fact that Malaysia should be peaceful and orderly, developed by Malays and bumiputra, Chinese, Indians, the Dayak, Iban, Melanau and Kadazan ethnic groups and others,” he added.

He said the Cabinet is together in this matter of ensuring that the peace and harmony enjoyed by all races is defended and that it will not tolerate any attempts to undermine national security.

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