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Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur on June 1, 2018. The Malaysian parliament on August 16, 2018, repealed a law imposing criminal penalties for “fake news.” (AFP/Mohd Rasfan)

CPJ welcomes repeal of Malaysia's "fake news" law

August 16, 2018 10:53 AM ET

Washington, D.C., August 16, 2018--The Malaysian parliament today repealed a law imposing criminal penalties for "fake news" that had been enacted earlier this year by the previous government of Prime Minister Najib Razak, according to news reports.

"The Committee to Protect Journalists applauds the government of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad for following through on it campaign pledge to repeal the 'fake news' law that blatantly threatened freedom of the press," said Steven Butler, CPJ's Asia program coordinator. "We hope other nations will follow Malaysia's lead in overturning laws that enable governments to decide what is news."

On June 7, 2018, CPJ sent a letter to the new prime minister calling for the repeal of the law.

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