“The petition you are trying to access has been removed from the site under our Moderation Policy because it is in violation of our Terms of Participation,” read the link on the website on Tuesday.
The website allows Americans to ask the Obama administration to take action on a range of important issues facing the country.
It states that the White House will review a petition if it gets enough support. The government will then send it to appropriate policy experts and issue an official response.
It is unsure how the Anwar petition violated the website’s terms.
Under the terms of participation, petitions that contain threats of unlawful violence, lewd material or defamatory statements could be deemed to have violated the terms.
Petitioners however have the right to seek reconsideration of the removal of the petition.
At about 10am, Tuesday Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang tweeted that another 3,733 signatures were needed to reach 100,000.
As a result of the petition’s removal, supporters of the jailed Opposition leader have bombarded the Facebook page of the United States Embassy in Kuala Lumpur with messages.
Many people have posted comments on Embassy’s posts, questioning why the petition was removed.
“Hello, I am a supporter of ‘Make the release of Malaysian Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim from prison a top priority for US policy toward Malaysia’ petition. I do not agree that we have violated your Terms of Participation and your removal of this petition is an act of suppressing our freedom of speech. Please tell us how we violated the rules or recover the petition immediately. Thank you,” read the comment.
The United States in February released a statement on its official website (whitehouse.gov) saying it had “serious concerns” regarding the Federal Court’s decision to uphold the guilty verdict and five-year jail sentence on Anwar for sodomy.