Jais raids Bible Society of Malaysia

PETALING JAYA (Jan 2, 2014): The Selangor Islamic Authorities (Jais) raided the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) today and seized 321 copies of Malay-language bibles.

Another 10 bibles in the Iban language were also seized as they contained the word "Allah" while BSM president Lee Min Choon and manager Sinclair Wong was arrested.

After being released on bail from the Damansara police station at 4pm, Lee said the 20 Jais officers and two police officers who conducted the raid did not present any warrant or identification.

"I arrived after I was informed of their presences and the officers behaved aggressively. I had to let them in to defuse the situation," he said.

Lee and Wong have not been charged and were instructed to give their statement to Jais on January 10.

He called on the Christian community to remain calm as the officers were only "doing their job" and believed that the raid was under the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988.

Lee said BSM had been in regular contact with the government regarding the legality of Malay bibles and was assured that they are allowed under certain conditions.

"We hope that the government and Jais will communicate with each other and work out the issue," he said.

In an immediate response, Selangor executive councillor for Islamic Affairs Sallehin Mukhyi said he was not informed of the raid.

"To my knowledge, we (Selangor government) had not been informed on the raid and it is possible that they had received instructions from above," he said.

Sallehin refrained from commenting further and will only make a statement when he has more details on the matter.