Big crowd at MPK4 field for anti-Lynas demo

Protestors buying anti-rare earth merchandise at the field
Press Clipping

KUANTAN: A big crowd has gathered at the MPK4 field here for the Himpunan Hijau 2.0 anti-Lynas rare earth plant protest.

The protestors, most of them in light green attire, were assembling at various locations leading to the field before marching there in groups.

Protestors buying anti-rare earth merchandise at the field

Police were stationed at all entry points leading to the field. A police helicopter was seen monitoring the situation from the air.

By 9am, the gathering turned into a carnival-like atmosphere with people beating drums and others cycling to the field to join the protest.

Many were seen in attire with the words "Stop Lynas" printed on them.

In Kuala Lumpur, a group of people gathered at Maju Junction to show their support for the anti-Lynas protest, singing Rasa Sayang and Heal The World. They chanted slogans like "Stop Lynas, Save Malaysia".

In Sibu, a group gathered at the Sibu Friendship Association to show their support.

In Ipoh, a group of people gathered at the former Asian Rare Earth Sdn Bhd (ARE) site in Bukit Merah to express their solidarity with the Anti-Lynas protesters in Kuantan.

Among the Anti-Lynas protesters in Kuantan. - PDRM photo

The group gathered at 11am to hear a short speech from Perak Anti Radioactive Action Committee (Parac) chairman Hew Yoon Tat before standing along Jalan Lahat, holding up banners and chanting slogans such as Stop Lynas' and Save Malaysia'.

The crowd dispersed at 12.10pm. Also present were Menglembu assemblyman Lim Pek Har, Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan, Sungai Siput MP Dr D. Michael Jeyakumar, Tebing Tinggi assemblyman Ong Boon Piow and Gopeng MP Dr Lee Boon Chye.

In George Town, a war of words broke out between two groups gathered at Speakers Square over the Lynas Corp plant.

One group chanted Henti Lynas' (Stop Lynas) while the other shouted 'We want Lynas'. Several minor scuffles ensued but police brought the situation under control.

Several people, including two reporters from Kwong Wah Yit Poh, were hit on the head with helmets during the scuffles.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng arrived about 6.30pm and proceeded to lead the chants of Henti Lynas, Selamatkan Malaysia'.

He said Speakers Square was a free place for people to gather before leaving about 7pm.

Timeline of events

11.30: The organisers announce end of rally and ask the crowd to disperse. The crowd leaves as it begins to drizzles.

11.20am: Anwar tells crowd that PR will cancel the Lynas project once they take over Putrajaya, will defend all environment and heritage issues.

Protestors lay on the road at Maju Junction. AZMAN GHANI/ The Star

11.00am: Protestors observe a minute's silence. Bersih 2.0 chairman Datuk S. Ambiga tells the crowd that Malaysians reject Lynas and those who support the project.

10.50am: Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim arrives.

10.25am: DAP advisor Lim Kit Siang and Selangor MB Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim arrive at the gathering.

MCA's Indera Mahkota Youth chairman David Choi arrives, says he came "together with our families, there are about 50 of us here."

10.20am: The protestors sing Suara Rakyat. Hishammudin Rais takes the microphone to give a speech.

10:10:am: A. Samad Said reads a poem titled "Gebeng Yang Luka" to the crowd.

9.45am: The rally gets underway with the singing of the Negaraku by the protestors, led by activist Hishamuddin Rais.

9.15am: Crowd cheers every time a group arrives at the field.

9.00am: Big crowd at the field chanting anti-Lynas slogans. National laurette A. Samad Said, PKR leaders R. Sivarasa, N. Surendran, PAS vice-president Salahuddin Ayub and Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh seen at the field.

It is a carnival atmosphere with some people beating drums as more people march into the field. Several protestors cycle to the field.

8.20am: Crowd and traffic jam starting to build up at the field.

8.15am: Scattered groups of protesters seen walking along Jalan Datuk Wong Ah Jang towards the field after having breakfast at stalls nearby. Traffic cops monitoring situation at strategic places.

8am: People starting to assemble in front of Megaview Hotel, some 2km away from the MPK4 field, the venue of the protest venue, among them is national laureate A. Samad Said.