Monday 21 May 2018

Malaysia’s reformist icon Anwar Ibrahim freed

He received a royal pardon after Mahathir Mohamad’s election win.

Anwar Ibrahim waves to supporters as he leaves a hospital in Kuala Lumpur, (Vincent Thian/AP)
Anwar Ibrahim waves to supporters as he leaves a hospital in Kuala Lumpur, (Vincent Thian/AP)

By Associated Press Reporter

Malaysia’s reformist icon Anwar Ibrahim has been freed from custody after receiving a royal pardon, paving the way for a political comeback following his alliance’s stunning election victory.

The 70-year-old was convicted of sodomy in 2015 in a case he said was aimed at crushing his alliance after making gains against Malaysia’s long-ruling coalition government.

His sentence expires on June 8 but the unexpected election win of his alliance led by former leader Mahathir Mohamad in May 9 polls led to his swift release.

Mr Anwar waved to reporters as he was whisked from a hospital on Wednesday where he was recovering from a shoulder surgery.

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Anwar Ibrahim waves after leaving a hospital in Kuala Lumpur (Andy Wong/AP)

Party spokesman Fahmi Fadzil said he has been pardoned by the king.

He is prime minister-in-waiting but unlikely to take over quickly from Mr Mahathir.

Press Association

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