Deputy Home Minister Datuk Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar sees no reason why pictures of pigs were blacked out in the local edition of the International New York Times.
“I personally don’t see any reason why pictures of pigs cannot appear in the publication,” said the Santubong MP when contacted by The Star Online.
Printers of the Malaysian edition, KHL Printing Co, had reportedly blacked out the faces of each animal in a frontpage story of Wednesday’s issue.
The act caused annoyance and amusement among readers, who were quick to share images of the censorship online.
“For the New York Times, if there’s pictures of nudity, smoking, weapons like guns, or pigs, we cover them up. It’s not allowed in a Muslim country,” said G. Omprakash, a representative from the printing company.
While he was unsure if there was a government directive against such images, such censorship is apparently a standard practice passed down from “seniors” in the Shah Alam-based company.
However, Wan Junaidi said there was no specific law against running photographs of pigs.
“During the H1N1 outbreak, you have seen a lot of pictures showing the culling of pigs in various publications,” he added.