Blogger ordered to reveal sources
Malaysian court orders Raja Petra to identify identities behind blog postings.
Last Modified: 14 Aug 2008 08:12 GMT

The Malaysia Today blog offers one of the country's most vibrant political discourse

A court has ordered a prominent Malaysian blogger to reveal his sources for articles alleging sodomy accusations against an opposition leader, according to a lawyer.

Muhammad Shafee said he obtained the high court order against Raja Petra Kamarudin - known for his sharp political comments on the internet - in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.

Shafee told The Associated Press news agency that the court order was to compel the blogger to reveal the sources of the three articles published this month as well as the identities of those who had commented on them.

"This man, he's been talking absolutely rubbish. He makes up stories," he said.

Raja Petra had posted three articles on his popular blog Malaysia Today implying that Shafee was behind the sodomy allegations against Anwar Ibrahim, an adviser to the opposition Keadilan (justice) party and a former deputy prime minister.

Contentious postings

Shafee said the court also ordered Raja Petra, who writes for his No Holds Barred column, to remove the contentious postings and to refrain from publishing similar allegations.

Raja Petra is already facing charges of sedition and criminal defamation over an article and a sworn statement he made alleging links between the country's deputy prime minister and a murdered Mongolian woman.

But Raja Petra said on Thursday he will not reveal his sources and denied knowing the identity of people who post comments on his blog.

"Of course, I won't. I never reveal my sources," he said.

'Backlash expected'

Raja Petra said he had expected "some sort of backlash" from his articles which is expected "in my line of business".

"I'm always prepared and never surprised," he said.

Anwar, the country's de facto opposition leader, was charged last week with sodomising a male aide, allegations he has denied, claiming a government conspiracy to derail his political comeback.

He is also preparing to contest a by-election later this month in his former constituency of Permatang Pauh.

Anwar is expected to easily win the by-election despite the sodomy charge.

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