IBTimes UK

Amnesty international has warned that the new Malaysian security law will give the Najib government "unchecked and abusive powers" and it could be used to encroach upon human rights.

The National Security Council Act that comes into force on Monday provides sweeping powers to a council led by Prime Minister Najib Razak, who faces pressure to resign over 1MDB financial scandal.

Under such act, the council can declare a state of emergency in areas which are considered to be under security threat. It can also impose curfews and have wide powers of arrest, search and seizure without a warrant.

Although the new security law is aimed at countering terrorism threats but the critics think that Najib might use it as a tool to hold on to power.

On Monday, the Amnesty said "government has spurned checks and assumed potentially abusive powers with the new law."

"We are gravely concerned that... the act may encourage human rights violations," Laurent Meillan, acting head of the UN Human Rights Office for South-east Asia, said in a statement to The Associated Press.

The UN Human Rights officer also said the act could lead to "unjust restrictions on free speech and assembly".

"We call on the government to revise the act to bring it in line with international human rights norms and standards," he added.

Amnesty international has warned that the new Malaysian security law will give the Najib government "unchecked and abusive powers" and it could be used to encroach upon the human rights.

The National Security Council Act that comes into force on Monday provides sweeping powers to a council led by Prime Minister Najib Razak, who faces pressure to resign over 1MDB financial scandal.

Under such act, the council can declare a state of emergency in areas which are considered to be under security threat. It can also impose curfews and have wide powers of arrest, search and seizure without a warrant.

Although the new security law is aimed at countering terrorism threats but the critics think that Najib might use it as a tool to hold on to power.

On Monday, the Amnesty said "government has spurned checks and assumed potentially abusive powers" with the new law.

"We are gravely concerned that... the act may encourage human rights violations," Laurent Meillan, acting head of the UN Human Rights Office for South-east Asia, said in a statement to The Associated Press.

The UN Human Rights officer also said the act could lead to "unjust restrictions on free speech and assembly".

"We call on the government to revise the act to bring it in line with international human rights norms and standards," he added.

IBTimes UK