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Tuesday, Sept 22
Public speaking ban on Anwar's wife in Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 22 (AFP) - The wife of detained former deputy premier Anwar Ibrahim said Tuesday she had been ordered not to speak at public rallies but would still press his campaign for reforms.

Police secured a commitment late Monday from Wan Azizah Wan Ismail that she would not speak in public, following a second day of clashes between Anwar supporters and security forces.

Anwar and 11 associates are being held under the Internal Security Act (ISA), which allows for detention without trial, reports said. Another 126 people were arrested at demonstrations and rallies on Sunday and Monday when supporters clashed with police, reports said.

Riot police dispersed several hundred people Monday night outside the national stadium after Queen Elizabeth II formally closed the Commonwealth Games. Reports said a small number were taken away by police.

Earlier plans for a mass demonstration at the stadium by thousands of Anwar supporters fizzled out after various groups which arrived separately failed to locate each other at the sprawling sports complex, one source said.

Pressure has mounted on Anwar's 46-year-old wife since his detention on Sunday night when police stormed the family home. The mother-of-six with no previous political background has become the new leader of the Anwar reform movement, mounted since his sacking on September 2 as deputy prime minister and finance minister.

Three police officers went to the family home on Monday night, with the large gathering waiting outside, and said she should not address public meetings. She said she was ordered not to use a loud hailer or loud speaker.

''But I told them I would continue to meet the press to defend my husband.

''I cannot address rallies but I will continue to speak to the people,'' she insisted without explaining how.

Officers accompanied by riot squad police went to the house again Tuesday to insist the large gatherings outside the family home should end, Anwar aides said.

Azizah told them that she had no control over the crowds who were turning up spontaneously, the aides reported. The police left the home after what they called a ''routine check.''

There were around 600 supporters there at the time.

Parliamentary opposition leader Lim Kit Siang, head of the Democratic Action Party (DAP), met Azizah after the police visit.

Lim called for the release of Anwar or for him to be produced in court.

''It is very improper to arrest someone to be charged in court and then to detained under the ISA. The ISA is not meant to be a convenient instrument for the police to decide later on what law to charge a person. This is total abuse of the ISA.''

He called on the police and Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to ''ensure that Azizah can see Anwar today and every day because there is no reason for such seclusion.''

Amnesty International has also condemned the use of the ISA by the government against Anwar.