Malaysia planning laws to control bloggers

Malaysia may introduce tough Internet laws to control bloggers and prevent them from spreading 'disharmony, chaos, seditious material and lies,' an AFP report said.

The AFP report said Malaysian Deputy Science and Technology Minister Kong Cho Ha said moves such as registering bloggers would be difficult, but accused some writers of posting controversial articles to attract readers.

'We are talking about creating cyber laws to control those who misuse the Internet,' Kong was quoted as saying in the Star newspaper.

'We need to have stricter cyber laws to prevent these bloggers from disseminating disharmony, chaos, seditious material and lies,' he said.

Kong cited the posting of a photo on an opposition politician's Web site last month of a Muslim male and Muslim female lawmaker, reportedly showing the man in a bathrobe with the woman lying on his chest, in what appeared to be a hotel room, the AFP report said.

The photo sparked a political scandal, since the two were not married, with accusations the pair had committed the Muslim sin of khalwat, or close proximity, when two unmarried people of the opposite sex are alone in each other's company.