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Malaysians Greet Jailed Politician

April 05, 2001

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — More than 1,000 people filled the streets of this capital to greet a jailed politician Wednesday, cheering, "We are with you!" as Anwar Ibrahim returned home under heavy guard for his mother's funeral.

Despite warnings not to turn Anwar's brief furlough into a political event, about 250 people scuffled with police later in the day at the grave site in Kuala Lumpur. They blocked the path of the ambulance carrying Anwar away from the funeral.

Anwar was arrested on charges of corruption and sodomy in 1998 and later sentenced to 15 years in prison.

He claims that the charges were concocted to crush his challenge to Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. The government denies it.

-- Associated Press

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