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Thursday, 27 July, 2000, 07:51 GMT 08:51 UK
Mahathir warns against too much democracy

The long-serving Prime Minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohamad, has warned that too much democracy can lead to violence and instability.

Dr Mahathir told a conference of Asia historians in the eastern state of Sabah that democracy could one day go the way of other political systems, such as feudalism and communism.

He said the pursuit of democracy could lead to hardship and anarchy, destroying an otherwise stable and prosperous society.

He also accused Western nations of using democracy and human rights as tools to recolonise parts of Asia.

Dr Mahathir's governing UMNO party has won a series of elections, but he's been criticised for Malaysia's human rights record and the jailing of the former deputy prime minister, Anwar Ibrahim.

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