Malaysia’s Constitution defines ethnic Malays as Muslims, leaving Malays with no choice but to identify as Muslim. They are dominant politically, and benefit from positive discrimination in business, education and the civil service, but a large ethnic Chinese minority holds economic power. The communities coexist in relative harmony, although racial and religious divides persist. 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 PAS uphold and protect Islam.

Mahathir Mohamad became prime minister in May 2018 following his shock election victory over the coalition that has ruled the country for six decades since independence from Britain.

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Case of the disappearing Christian CDs: 7 years on, Malaysian court orders their return

Case of the disappearing Christian CDs: 7 years on, Malaysian court orders their return

After a seven-year battle through the courts, yesterday (23 June) Jill Ireland, a Malaysian Christian finally won the right to re-gain her CDs of worship songs which include the word ‘Allah’. The Malaysian Court of Appeal ordered its Government to return the spiritual material to Ms Ireland. Her appeal had […]

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‘Allah’ is forbidden

A panel of judges in Malaysia ruled on Wednesday that The Herald, a Catholic weekly newspaper, has no basis to challenge an earlier federal court order to stop using the word “Allah” in its pages to name God. The Herald’s legal odyssey began  in 2009 when the government said the […]

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In Malaysia, Christmas decried as ‘ploy’ to lead Muslims astray

In Malaysia, Christmas decried as ‘ploy’ to lead Muslims astray

A billboard in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, appeals to national unity in a February 2014 photo. Rising fundamentalist Islam put increased pressure on minorities in the country’s famously multicultural society during the year.Courtesy Open Doors International   For Malaysian Christians, 2014 has been a year when they had to dig deep […]

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Malaysia refuses Church right to appeal ban on use of ‘Allah’

Malaysia refuses Church right to appeal ban on use of ‘Allah’

Almost eight years after the Malaysian Catholic newspaper the Herald first sought to overthrow a government ban on it using the word ‘Allah’ for ‘God’ in its publication the judicial appeal process appears to have ended in failure. A federal court in Kuala Lumpur ruled on June 23 that it […]

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