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Wednesday, October 7, 1998

Tajol Rosli: No blanket nod for cops to use ISA

BATU PAHAT: The Government does not give blanket approval to the police to use the Internal Security Act, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Tajol Rosli Ghazali said.

Citing two examples, he said the Government recently rejected proposals by the police to detain under the ISA those involved in phone-cloning and computer hacking.

He said the proposal was rejected by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad because he felt the offences were not a threat to national security and public order.

"Dr Mahathir felt that court action was enough to punish the offenders.

"This shows the Government does not abuse the ISA and will apply it only when the country's peace and order is under threat," he told reporters on Monday after launching a campaign here to encourage more people to donate towards the National Special Fund.

Tajol Rosli said the Prime Minister had reasoned that phone-cloning was not a threat to the nation but was more of a loss to telecommunication firms and the industry.

Dr Mahathir also found that hackers were more of a public nuisance, he said.

In Kuala Lumpur, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Ong Ka Ting gave assurances that the Government would honour its promise to allow free flow of information on the Internet for the success of the Multimedia Super Corridor project.

Ong said, however, that certain parties would not be allowed to use the Internet as an instrument to create tension in the country.

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