Thousands rallied in southern Malaysia on Sunday against a government-backed $56 billion petroleum hub they say will force thousands out of their homes and damage a fishing community.
Environmentalists from across the country gathered in the sleepy coastal town of Pengerang where the project, spearheaded by state oil giant Petronas and also involving private companies, is due to be completed by 2016.
A coalition of local NGOS say the 170 billion-ringgit Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex – an industrial park for the oil industry – will harm the livelihoods of local residents and fishermen in an area famed for its lobsters.
On Sunday protestors, mostly dressed in green, heard opposition leaders promise to cancel the project if they come to power at national elections that must be held by the middle of next year. Organisers said 8,000 demonstrators took part although reports estimated the crowd to be less than half that figure.