There were over a hundred personnel, present at KLCC at about 1.30pm today, from the Malaysian Federal Reserves Unit (FRU), blue-uniformed and plain-clothes policemen. They were anticipating a demonstration from unhappy Malaysians taking to the streets in protest against the recent 30 sen hike in petrol prices.
KLCC security guards also got in the act when they started ushering-in people/shoppers, both local and foreign, who were standing outside the mall trying to figure out what was going on.
The guards and policemen told people to go into the complex immediately, before they closed/locked the doors/main entrance. The cops claimed that they couldn’t ensure the people’s safety if the ‘law enforcers’ started retaliating against the protestors.
Soon after, at about 2.30pm the demonstrators, comprising of primarily members/supporters of opposition parties Keadilan (PKR), PAS (Islamic party), PSM (Socialists) and the Democratic Action Party (DAP).
The protesters, about 2000, walked towards KLCC from Hotel Nikko carrying party flags, banners and posters. They chanted slogans such as “Hidup rakyat, minyak naik rakyat susah” (Citizens suffer when oil price increases).
Politicians from the various parties took turns to speak through a loud-speaker, which was unfortunately not loud enough, to the crowd while questioning the rational of the price hike and the government on what has happened to money collected from oil exports from the country.
Their speeches were often drowned out by a police helicopter flying over the crowd and around KLCC, sometimes flying a low as about a couple of hundred feet above the crowd. Although the copter was intimidating, loud and menacing, the protesters seemed undeterred by it.
The protest lasted for over an hour and a majority of the demonstrators dispersed peacefully. However it has been reported that some protesters continued their march to Jalan Sultan Ismail where they were doused by FRU water cannons. There were no apparent arrests.
article by housemate
FRU & Police
Helicopter Flies Very Low
KLCC Main Door Closed
picture courtesy of housemate