KUALA LUMPUR • Prominent news site The Malaysian Insider (TMI) was blocked yesterday evening by the country's Internet regulators.
The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) said in a statement that it took action following "public complaints", but did not specify what was the objectionable content. "MCMC reminds news portals not to spread or publish articles whose veracity has yet to be confirmed. This could invite confusion and cause unwanted situations," it said.
TMI editor Jahabar Sadiq called the move to block its accessibility through state-controlled Internet service providers "an unpleasant surprise" on the site's eighth birthday. The MCMC has blocked other sites in the past, including Sarawak Report, which has made claims of graft against Prime Minister Najib Razak. Sarawak Report remains inaccessible in Malaysia.
Observers noted that the block occurred several hours after TMI ran a report citing unnamed sources as saying that anti-graft investigators had enough evidence to bring charges against PM Najib over a financial scandal.