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Friday December 2, 2016
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Protesters sit on the road at Jalan Ampang during the Bersih 5 rally in Kuala Lumpur November 2016. — Picture by Yusof Mat IsaProtesters sit on the road at Jalan Ampang during the Bersih 5 rally in Kuala Lumpur November 2016. — Picture by Yusof Mat IsaKUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 — The three traders and hawkers groups that had sought to block the November 19 Bersih 5 rally have terminated their lawsuit against the organisers.

According to a report on The Star website, the lawyer representing Bersih 2.0 said High Court judge Justice S. Nantha Balan dismissed the lawsuit after the three groups withdrew the action.

“No reason was given for the withdrawal,” Shahid Adli Kamarudin was quoted as saying.

The lawsuit was academic as Nantha previously rejected the application for an interim injunction against the Bersih 5 rally and the “Red Shirts” gathering meant to counter it.

Nantha said on November 17 that the three groups filed their application late despite the earlier announcement of the rally date, adding they could not demonstrate that previous rallies had caused harm to their members.

The Lorong Tuanku Abdul Rahman Traders and Hawkers Association, the Modern Malay Bazaar Trader Association, and the Trading Premise Renters Association filed their suit on November 16, three days before the rally; the Societies Act requires that such suits must be filed two months ahead.

More than 10,000 people took to the streets of the capital city on November 19 for Bersih 2.0’s protest against corruption.

A smaller number of the “Red Shirts” also rallied without major incident aside from sporadic arrests by police.

No clashes occurred despite initial fears over both rallies happening in the same place and on the same day, as police successfully kept both groups apart.

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