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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 17 — Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the cartoonist known as Zunar who was barred from leaving the country today is free to mount a court challenge against his directive.
“He can challenge me if he wants. No problem,” Khalid told Malay Mail Online when contacted.
When asked about the reason for the travel ban, the national police chief said the question should be posed at a press conference.
Zunar, whose real name is Zulkiflee SM Anwar Ulhaque, was told by an immigration officer at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport of his travel ban when he tried to fly out to Singapore this morning.
The ban was apparently effective since last June 24, based on an order from the IGP.
The cartoonist, who frequently lampoons Malaysian politics in his art, was slapped with nine sedition charges in April last year that could see him face 43 years in prison.
He was accused of making nine “seditious” tweets which, among others, alleged judicial bias and government intervention in PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy trial and conviction.