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Court ruling on right to use 'Allah' only for Sarawak, says PM

It is not applicable in other states like Melaka, Penang or Selangor, says Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

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Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim. Photo: Bernama
Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim. Photo: Bernama

The court's decision to give Christians the right to use the word "Allah" along with three other Arabic words in their religious publications is specifically for the state of Sarawak, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said today.

Anwar said the government and the home ministry had filed an appeal against the decision after losing the case.

"This is in the case of Sarawak only… the ruling is not applicable elsewhere like in Melaka, Penang or Selangor... we need to understand this," he told reporters after an Aidilfitri celebration with the police force at Tanjung Minyak today.

Yesterday, the Malaysian government and the home ministry withdrew their appeal against the Kuala Lumpur High Court decision ruling that Christians can use the word "Allah" and three other Arabic words in the publication of religious materials for educational purposes.

The notice of termination of the judicial review appeal filed on April 18, stated that both appellants did not wish to proceed with the appeal which was submitted on March 12, 2021, and dismissed the entire appeal at the Court of Appeal without an order as to costs.

On March 10, 2021, the High Court made the decision after allowing a judicial review application filed by a Sarawakian Christian woman of Melanau descent, Jill Ireland Lawrence Bill.

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