Lawyers seek house arrest order for ailing Malaysian opposition leader

(From the Star Online)

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s lawyers want him to be held under house arrest so that he can get access to medical care and treatment.

His lawyer R. Sivarasa claimed that Anwar’s health is deteriorating rapidly in Sungai Buloh prison as he is not being provided access to required treatment.

The former opposition leader had previously been admitted to Hospital Kuala Lumpur on June 2 before being discharged on June 5.

“At the very minimum, even if the request for house arrest is denied, he must be hospitalised for a sufficiently long time to comprehensively deal with all his medical issues, said Sivarasa in a statement on Tuesday.

Anwar Ibrahim

Anwar Ibrahim

He claimed that the doctors had told Anwar he requires further evaluation and treatment relating to a number of medical issues including irregular blood pressure, a 4cm growth on his kidney that requires a CT scan, gastritis that requires a gluten-free diet, and a shoulder muscle tear and chronic arthritis that require intensive physiotherapy.

Sivarasa added that the prison said it had received no medical reports from the hospital requesting further testing and it has no facilities for any testing or treatment of the conditions.

He said that Anwar was visited once briefly by a physiotherapist who provided some minimal manipulation therapy since his discharge.

“Anwar is being held in solitary confinement in a bare cell, having a bucket for bathing, a squat toilet, and being held in hot and humid conditions with minimal ventilation are exacerbating his health problems,” Sivarasa said, adding that Anwar has lost 6kg since his initial detention.

He also claimed that Anwar is harassed by being checked every 15 minutes in his cell, around the clock.

Anwar was jailed in February for five years for sodomising former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan in 2008.



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