Malaysia cops allow meeting on use of Jawi in Chinese, Tamil schools, Latest World News - The New Paper

Malaysia cops allow meeting on use of Jawi in Chinese, Tamil schools

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KUALA LUMPUR: A meeting to discuss Jawi writing in Chinese and Tamil language schools was held yesterday, a day after police used a court order to block a similar congress planned by Chinese education groups after protests from Malay groups.

The National Jawi Congress, which was organised by a new set-up that has been labelled a "liberal" group by some of its critics, began at about 10.30am at a hotel in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, local media reported.

Police kept watch but did not intervene.

The police on Friday stopped a separate meeting planned on Saturday by Chinese educationists in Kajang, Selangor, with the police citing fears of "riots" if the meeting was allowed to proceed.

Chinese educationists had planned to speak out against the Education Ministry's move to introduce khat, or Jawi writing, in Chinese and Tamil primary schools next year.

Khat is the writing of the Malay language using Arabic script.

At the meeting yesterday organised by the new group Seni Khat Action Team (Sekat), Chinese educationists sat with Malay intellectuals to discuss the issue, the reports say.

In a separate development, president of Islamist party Parti Islam Se-Malaysia Abdul Hadi Awang yesterday defended what he said about Chinese educationists living in a "Malay world".

Malaysia's other races should be grateful to the Malays who are the original occupiers, he said.

He said those who opposed the teaching of khat in schools were neo-colonialists and could be deemed enemies of Islam, the Malay Mail reported.

"Therefore, the time will come when we can declare that those who cause hatred towards the Malays' original language that carried the effect of Islam's influence in this region are the remnants of the continuation of the neo-colonialism agenda, enemies that ought to have jihad declared against them," he wrote on his Facebook page.