Friday, August 29, 2008

Timeline: Malaysian opposition leader Anwar's life

Major events in the life of Malaysia's opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, 61:

1968: Anwar emerges as a major political activist by helping to found the Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia, a leading students' organization.

1974: Anwar is arrested and imprisoned without trial for 20 months after leading student protests against poverty among farmers.

1982: Then-Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad enlists Anwar to join the United Malays National Organization ruling party. Anwar wins a parliamentary seat in northern Permatang Pauh constituency.

1983: Mahathir appoints Anwar as Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports.

1986: Anwar becomes Education Minister and implements policies seen as favoring the ethnic Malay Muslim majority.

1991: Mahathir places Anwar in charge of the Ministry of Finance.

1993: Anwar wins ruling party poll to become deputy prime minister.

April-June, 1997: Mahathir takes a two-month holiday, leaving Anwar as acting leader.

June-September, 1997: Asian financial crisis hits Malaysia. Mahathir reverses several actions Anwar took.

Sept. 2, 1998: Mahathir fires Anwar from the Cabinet after an economic policy dispute.

Sept. 20, 1998: Anwar is arrested for alleged sodomy after he leads a protest during which tens of thousands demand that Mahathir resign.

Sept. 29, 1998: Anwar appears in court and pleads innocent to corruption and sodomy charges.

April 14, 1999: Anwar is convicted of corruption and sentenced to six years in prison. He is forced to resign his Parliament seat.

Aug. 8, 2000: Anwar is found guilty of sodomy and sentenced to nine years in prison, to begin after completion of six-year corruption sentence.

Oct. 31, 2003: Mahathir retires and hands power to Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Sept. 2, 2004: Malaysia's highest court overturns Anwar's sodomy conviction and frees him.

March 8, 2008: Anwar's three-party opposition alliance wins an unprecedented 82 seats in Malaysia's 222-member Parliament and wrests control of five states.

Apr. 14, 2008: A ban on Anwar holding political office stemming from his corruption conviction expires. Anwar claims he can topple the government through parliamentary defections by mid-September.

June 29, 2008: Anwar's 23-year-old male former aide accuses Anwar of sodomizing him.

July 31, 2008: Anwar's wife vacates her parliamentary seat in Permatang Pauh to allow Anwar to contest it.

Aug. 7, 2008: Anwar pleads innocent in court to a charge of sodomizing his former aide.

Aug. 26, 2008: Anwar regains his parliamentary seat in Permatang Pauh in a landslide electoral victory.

source: Timeline: Malaysian opposition leader Anwar's life International Herald Tribune