Malaysia arrests 50, releases more pictures of dead militants in Sabah standoffSouce:Xinhua Publish By Thomas Whittle Updated 09/03/2013 4:49 am in World / no comments
LAHAD DATU, Malaysia, March 8 — Malaysian police on Friday arrested at least 50 people and released more pictures of dead militants as security forces continued to hunt down the remaining Filipino intruders in a deadly standoff in Malaysia’s Sabah state.
Police chief Ismail Omar said at least 50 people, including women, have been detained in Sabah under the Security Offences Act a new law that has been used to arrest suspected terrorists for alleged links to the militants.
He told a press conference that security forces are continuing to mop up the remaining militants in enforced security areas, and showed media the photos of militants shot dead by the security forces and their seized weapons.
Defense minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had two days ago released photos of 13 dead bodies believed to be of the militants.
Malaysian forces and the Filipino militants have been fighting for a week in an intense standoff that left at least 60 people dead, including eight Malaysian policemen.
The militants had come in a group of more than 180 who arrived in the east coastal town of Lahad Datu in Sabah from southern Philippines on February 9 to claim territorial rights to the land.
They were followers of a self-proclaimed Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III who insisted Sabah belongs to his sultanate.
The Filipino government has asked Malaysia to ensure “humane treatment” of the Filipinos detained on Friday and that the Philippine humanitarian team be given full access to the detainees.
Malaysian armed forces chief Zulkifeli Mohd Zin said the Sulu militants showed no signs of surrender.