On 2nd July, Anna Har, the festival director of the Freedom Film Fest, Malaysia’s annual International Human Rights Film Festival and cartoonist Amin Landak were called in by the police for questioning over the production and screening of a short animated film on police torture, entitled Chili Powder and Thinner. On the same day, the police also raided the office of FreedomFilmFest and Amin’s home and confiscated their computers and other related equipment.
Subsequently, on 6 July, three members of human rights group SUARAM, who were the co-producers of the animated film, and a guest panel speaker at the screening event, were also called in for questioning by the police.
The Human Rights Film Network (HRFN) has started a petition to release the organizers and artists with the following demands:
1. Drop all investigations on Anna Har, FreedomFilmFest, Amin Landak, cartoonist, and all individuals related to the production and screening of Chili Powder and Thinner.
2. Protect the constitutional right of Malaysian filmmakers, artists and activists to freedom of expression.
3. Stop any forms of intimidation and censorship of human rights defenders in Malaysia.
You can sign of the HRFN's petition here: http://chng.it/82GdBPStxw, and join another petition to support the call for more police accountability in Malaysia on this link: https://www.change.org/p/pdrm-gagal-ipcmc-now-end-police-brutality-and-misconduct-in-malaysia.
Watch CHILLI POWDER AND THINNER on YouTube:
Cover image: Screen capture from Chilli Powder and Thinner