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The Batang Kali massacre involved the indiscriminate killing of 24 unarmed villagers by British troops on 12 December 1948 during the Malayan Emergency. The incident happened during counter-insurgency operations against Malay and Chinese communists in Malaya - then a colony of the British Crown. It is sometimes described as "Britain's My Lai". 
Despite several investigations by the British government since the 1950s, as well as, a re-examination of the evidence by the Royal Malaysia Police between 1993 and 1997, no charges have ever been brought against any of the alleged perpetrators.
2 Subsequent developments
3 Judicial review
4 See also
6 Further reading
7 External links
In December 1948, 7th Platoon, G Company, 2nd Scots Guards surrounded a rubber plantation at Sungai Rimoh near Batang Kali in Selangor. The civilians were then rounded up by the British soldiers. The men were separated from the women and children for interrogation.
During this time, shooting was heard. In total 24 unarmed villagers were killed before the village was set on fire. The only adult male survivor of the killings was a man named Chong Hong who was in his 20s at the time. He fainted and was presumed dead. Other eyewitnesses include the victims' spouses and children such as Tham Yong, aged 17 and Loh Ah Choy, who was aged seven at the time.
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In the 1960s, Denis Healey, the British Defence Secretary instructed Scotland Yard to set up a special task force (led by Frank Williams) to investigate the matter. An alleged lack of evidence gave the incoming Conservative government an excuse to drop the investigation in 1970.
On 9 September 1992, a BBC documentary, an investigative report into the massacre entitled "In Cold Blood" was aired in the United Kingdom and revealed fresh evidence. The documentary included accounts from witnesses and survivors, including confessions of an ex-Scots Guards soldier and interviews with the Scotland Yard police officers who had investigated the case in 1970.
On 8 June 1993 with the help of the MCA Legal Bureau, a petition was presented to Queen Elizabeth II asking that justice be done.
On 14 July 1993 a police report was lodged by three survivors, accompanied by the MCA Public Service and Complaints Bureau Chief Michael Chong.
On 18 September 1993, however, Gavin Hewitt (Head of South East Asia Department of the Foreign Office, UK) stated that "No new evidence has been uncovered by the British authorities to warrant the setting up of another official inquiry into the alleged massacre of 24 villagers in Batang Kali…"
On 30 December 1997, an investigation report was submitted to the Royal Malaysian Police Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Bukit Aman. The case was closed on the grounds of insufficient evidence for prosecution.
On 13 July 2004, the DAP, a Malaysian political party, raised the Batang Kali massacre in the Malaysian Parliament.
On 25 March 2008, the family members of the massacre victims and several NGOs formed an 'Action Committee Condemning the Batang Kali Massacre' and submitted a petition to the British High Commission in Malaysia. The petition seeks official apology, compensation for the family members of the 24 massacre victims and financial contribution towards the educational and cultural development of the Ulu Yam community.
On 30 January 2009, the Foreign Office in Britain rejected a call for an inquiry into the massacre of villagers. On 24 April 2009, the British government announced that it was reconsidering this decision. In January 2012, lawyers for the victims and their families were given Foreign Office correspondence and Cabinet Office guidance relating to the incident.
On 30 April 2009, The Independent reported that the British government bowed to legal action and agreed to reinvestigate the massacre. Secret papers uncovered by Mrs. Tham's solicitors, Bindmans, now show that the colonial Attorney General who exonerated the British troops of any wrongdoing at the time privately believed that mass public executions might deter other insurgents. A second document reveals that officials at the British High Commission in Kuala Lumpur had briefed ministers that there was little point in Scotland Yard officers interviewing eyewitnesses in the 1970s because Malaysian villagers were untrustworthy, motivated by compensation and it was "doubtful" they could recall events 22 years earlier.
On 2 April 2010, Tham Yong, 78, the last Malaysian adult witness to the massacre of 24 unarmed villagers by British troops in 1948, died, leaving the campaign for an official investigation uncertain.
Malaysian victims unsuccessfully petitioned Queen Elizabeth to re-open an inquiry into the massacre in 1993 and in 2004. They tried again in 2008 and didn't receive a reply from the British government until 2011, when the High Court agreed to review the case.
In May 2012 the judicial review on the British government's position was held at the High Court in London. On 4 September 2012, High Court's judges in London upheld a government decision not to hold a public hearing into the killing. The Court also ruled that Britain was responsible for the killing in Batang Kali. In its written judgement, it said, "There is evidence that supports a deliberate execution of the 24 civilians at Batang Kali." 
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