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Malaysian court frees 'detained' blogger

ISA arrest ruled unlawful

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Malaysia's High Court today ordered the release of one of the country's most prominent bloggers, who was detained without trial under the country's controversial security law.

Raja Petra Kamarudin, editor of the Malaysia Today website, was arrested in September under the country's Internal Security Act (ISA) for publishing an article the government claims was insulting to Islam.

Raja Petra had also earlier suggested Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister may have been involved in the 2007 murder of a Mongolian model.

The ISA was created in the 1960s as a means to protect the country against "communist subversion." It allows the government to detain people it considers a security threat for two years without trial and renew the sentence indefinitely.

Raja Petra had applied for a writ of habeas corpus seeking release. The court ruled there were not sufficient grounds for his detention and his arrest under the ISA was unlawful.

The decision, however, doesn't prevent the government from appealing or even simply re-arresting Raja Petra. Malaysia's New Straits Times reports the government won't dispute the court decision.

Other ISA detainees include MP Teresa Kok. who was jailed for one week after she was accused of campaigning for a mosque to lower the volume of its call to prayer. ®

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