Dog-petting event organiser to break silence

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia - After keeping a low profile since last Sunday's "I Want to Touch a Dog" event organiser Syed Azmi Alhabshi will finally break his silence and speak to the press on Saturday.

An email was sent out to members of the media Friday, inviting reporters to attend a press conference by Syed Azmi on Saturday morning, where he is expected to give an explanation regarding the issue.

In a comment posted Thursday on the event Facebook group, Syed Azmi assured that he was doing 'OK' and apologised for those who had been facing a hard time due to public backlash.

In response, he received positive messages of support and assurances from the event page members.

Syed Azmi had previously received online death threats over his involvement in the event.

On Thursday, event organisers requested attendees and media to remove pictures of people petting dogs as participants had also been targets of verbal abuse.

The Department of Islamic Development of Malaysia (Jakim) said it would be conducting an investigation into an event, which was held at Central Park in Bandar Utama here.