Malaysia’s Constitution defines ethnic Malays as Muslims, leaving Malays with no choice but to identify as Muslim. Conversion to Christianity is against the law in almost all states, as is evangelism among Malay Muslims. Political, social and religious instability is on the rise, while increasing intolerance towards Chinese, Indian and indigenous tribespeople affects Christians, too, as most belong to these minority groups. Political parties like the ruling UMNO and opposition PAS uphold and protect Islam, and government officials therefore strive to maintain or increase the Islamic influence on society to the detriment of non-Muslim minorities, e.g. by running Islamization strategies. Various Muslim NGOs see themselves as “champions of Islam” and have the support of the government. Their statements and actions often stir up racial disharmony and religious discrimination.

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Raymond Koh’s wife ‘expects justice’ as inquiry into Malaysian pastor’s abduction ends

Raymond Koh’s wife ‘expects justice’ as inquiry into Malaysian pastor’s abduction ends

The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) has concluded its inquiry into the disappearance of church leader Raymond Koh, who was kidnapped in broad daylight by masked men on 13 February 2017. The final three witnesses appeared before the inquiry panel on Friday, 7 December, which is expected to present […]

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Malaysia releases four Finnish Christians

Putra Mosque in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Evangelism among Malay Muslims is against the law. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

The four Finnish nationals arrested in Malaysia last week for distributing Christian literature have been released and deported, The Associated Press reports. The four – two men and two women aged between 27 and 60 – were arrested in their hotel on Langkawi Island, a well-known tourist destination, on 20 […]

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Malaysia arrests four Finnish nationals for distributing Christian literature

Conversion to Christianity in Muslim-majority Malaysia is against the law in almost all states, as is evangelism among Malay Muslims. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

Four Finnish nationals were arrested by police in Malaysia on Tuesday, 20 November, for allegedly distributing Christian pamphlets, reports AsiaNews. The four, two men and two women aged between 27 and 60, were arrested in their hotel on Langkawi Island, a well-known tourist destination, on charges of “disturbing religious harmony”. […]

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Malaysia’s ‘deep-seated tensions’ exposed by MP’s call for religious freedom

Kasthuri Patto (Twitter)

A Malaysian Catholic MP’s call last month for the government to sign the UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief has highlighted the “deep-seated tensions between ultra-conservative Muslims and the new government”, says the director of Malaysia’s Religious Freedom […]

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Malaysia: Nearly 500 days since his abduction, Raymond Koh’s wife renews call for action

Susanna Liew (r), wife of Pastor Koh, supports Che Mat's wife, Norhayati Mohd Afriffin (l), as she calls for her husband's release at the meeting on Sunday (24 June). (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

Dozens of people came together in Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur on Sunday (24 June) to call for the release of pastor Raymond Koh, social activist Amri Che Mat and Christian couple Joshua and Ruth Hilmy, and for further investigation into their disappearances. At least 60 people met with the families […]

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Malaysian bishops: ‘We need leaders who truly care for the people’

Malaysian bishops: ‘We need leaders who truly care for the people’

For the first time in six decades, several high-profile Malaysian church leaders have publicly called for a change of government. On 24 April the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Malaysia issued a pastoral letter, saying: “We need to choose leaders who truly care for the rakyat [people], promote justice and equality, stand […]

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