Malaysian groups ‘strongly condemn raids against filmmaker and artist’

This statement was originally published on on 2 July 2021.

The Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ), Freedom Film Network (FFN) and partners are appalled by and strongly condemn ongoing efforts by the police to intimidate and persecute Freedom Film Network (FFN) and animator/artist, Amin Landak over the animated film, Chilli Powder and Thinner. The film illustrates the true story of a boy’s testimony of being tortured while being in police custody. FFN co-founder Anna Har and Amin went to the federal police headquarters in Bukit Aman at 2.30pm today to have their statements taken in connection with the film. They finished giving their statements to the police and left Bukit Aman at about 4.10pm. Nevertheless, the police raided the FFN office and Amin’s home all the same.

The Malaysian police are clearly on a rampage against FFN over the animated short film, which depicts police officers torturing and abusing individuals in custody in Malaysia. This investigation, and related raid, contributes to a broader pattern of authorities attempting to quell allegations of police misconduct. Police brutality and abuse of power have been topics of heated discussion online, but authorities routinely silence such discourse by threatening individuals with a criminal investigation.

Retaliatory investigations against human rights defenders, artists and journalists for raising attention to violations of basic human rights show the dire need to protect freedom of expression and ensure police officers in Malaysia are held accountable for any instances of misconduct. The police must be open to public scrutiny and the demand for transparency, while adherence to rule of law must always be upheld. Initiating an investigation merely on the account that a particular incident negatively portrays the police is unwarranted and a serious violation of our constitutional guarantees of freedom of expression and speech.

We, therefore, call for the following measures to be adopted by the State:

  • Drop all investigations and stop all acts of intimidation and adverse actions against Anna Har, FFN, Amin Landak, whistleblowers, and others associated with the animated short film;
  • Establish the Independent Police Complaints of Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), with no further delays, so that police accountability and professionalism is always upheld.

It is incumbent on the government to ensure that they act now and not be complicit in allowing freedom of expression and speech and artistic freedom in Malaysia to be censored or penalised, and where artists and filmmakers operate within a climate of fear. If this practice is not halted, our democracy will be at threat and political priorities will continue to prevail over the public interest.

2 July 2021
Issued by: Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) and Freedom Film Network (FFN)

Endorsed by the following organisations with common interest in promoting FoE:

Amnesty International Malaysia
C4 Center
Gerakan Media Merdeka (GERAMM)
Justice for Sisters
KRYSS Network
Sisters in Islam
Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
Agora Society Malaysia
Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (ABIM)
Angkatan Mahasiswa UM
Association of Women Lawyers (AWL)
Beyond Architecture Outlet (BAO)
Beyond Borders Malaysia
Citizens against Enforced Disappearances (CAGED)
Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (Bersih 2.0)
Demokrat Kebangsaan
Demokrat UKM
Demokrat UM
Eliminating Deaths and Abuse in Custody (EDICT)
EMPOWER Malaysia
Family Frontiers Malaysia
Five Arts Centre
Function 8 Singapore
Gerakan Mahasiswa Maju UPM
Jaringan Hak Asasi Manusia (JHAM)
Jaringan Rakyat Tertindas (JERIT)
Klima Action Malaysia (KAMY)
Malaysia Muda
Monsoon Malaysia
New Naratif
North South Initiative
Our Journey
Pangrok Sulap
Pergerakan Tenaga Akademik Malaysia (GERAK)
Persatuan Kebangsaan Pelajar Islam Malaysia (PKPIM)
Persatuan Komuniti Prihatin Selangor dan Kuala Lumpur
Persatuan Sahabat Wanita, Selangor (Friends of Women Organisation, Selangor)
Pertubuhan Solidaritas
Projek Wawasan Rakyat (POWR)
Ruang Kongsi (Penang)
Sabah Human Rights Centre
Sabah Law Society Subcommittee on Human Rights
Sabah Reform Initiative (SARI)
Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia (SABM)
Society for Equality, Respect And Trust for All Sabah (SERATA)
Student Progressive Front UUM
Student Unity Front UKM
Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
Teoh Beng Hock Trust for Democracy
Terabai Kenyalang Heritage Association of Sarawak (TKHAS)
The 14% Project
Think Centre
Tindak Malaysia
Undi 18
Waroeng Baru


Andrew Khoo
Benazir Japiril Bandaran
Beverly Joeman
Chen Yoke Pin
Devaruban Samalam Ruban
Elroi Yee
Farida Mohammad
Hui Yein
Janet Pillai
Julien Chen Lip Syn
Kenneth Cheng
Lim Kye Lee
Mark Teh
Nafeesa Mat Ali
Okui Lala
S. M. Muthu
Simon Soon
Wong Chin Huat
Wong Tay Sy
Wong Yan Kee
Yolanda Augustin
Zaharom Nain

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Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) is a network of human rights journalists in Uganda working towards enhancing the promotion, protection and respect of human rights through defending and building the capacities of journalists, to effectively exercise their constitutional rights and fundamental freedoms for collective campaigning through the media.

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