The Star, Malaysia
THE ARREST of sacked Malaysian deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim was totally expected. The wonder is Mahathir Mohamad allowed matters to get so far. In the end it needed several hundred armed policemen to carry out the arrest. That such a show of force was necessary shows how much the prime minister has to fear from Mr Anwar's campaign to bring him down. Some 40,000 people attended a rally in Kuala Lumpur earlier in the day to demand Dr Mahathir step down. Much depends on whether there is anyone to carry the Anwar torch. His wife as another Corazon Aquino? We must pray that events play out peacefully.
Hong Kong Standard
MAHATHIR'S FORMER heir-apparent undeterred by the threat of arrest, begun calling for an end to Mahathir's 17-year reign. Until recently, Anwar was considered as Malaysia's prime minister-in-waiting and a model of Muslim devotion. His sacking from the cabinet marked a final rupture with Mahathir, but the thousands of supporters who attended his nightly rallies since then had kept alive the embers of Anwar's political ambitions.
Business Day, Thailand
THE ARREST of Anwar Ibrahim, the sacked deputy prime minister, was inevitable but it poses serious problems for the government. Developments forced its hand. It could no longer leave him free to stir up more public opposition to Mahathir. But arresting Anwar will not be the end of the matter. His wife, Dr Wan Azizah, is set to replace him as leader of the reform movement. Other supporters have also said they will carry on the struggle.
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