2 Bangladeshis arrested in Malaysia for alleged IS links
Published : 24 Jan 2017, 11:45:46
Malaysian police arrested four people including two Bangladesh for allegedly being involved with the Islamic State. Photo: Malaysian police
Malaysian police arrested four suspected members of Syria-based IS militant group, including two Bangladeshis recently, reports the New Strait Times.
The Special Branch’s Counter-Terrorism Division smashed an Islamic State (IS) terrorist cell in Malaysia, with the arrest of four people, the report said.
The four were arrested in a series of raids between January 13 and 19 in Kuala Lumpur and Sabah. The suspects, including a woman, were aged between 27 and 31.
The Malaysian inspector-general of police, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, said the arrests meant that police had effectively destroyed a new IS cell which had planned to turn Sabah into a transit station for Southeast Asia and South Asia terrorists to join a Philippines-based IS group led by Dr Mahmud Ahmad and Isnilon Hapilon.
Dr Mahmud was a former Universiti Malaya lecturer who had joined IS militants based in the southern Philippines.
“Preliminary investigation revealed that the cell, led by Dr Mahmud, had combined with an Abu Sayyaf group headed by Isnilon, which had pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakar Al Baghdadi.
“Apart from Dr Mahmud, two other Malaysians, Amin Bacho (a member of the Darul Islam Sabah militant group) and Joraimee Awang had also joined the cell which operated out of Marawi City, Mindanao, Phillipines,” he said in a statement.
The first arrest, involving a 31-year-old Filipino, was made in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah on Jan 13.
The man, who works as a watch seller, had received instructions from Dr Mahmud to recruit and arrange the infiltration of new IS members from Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Rohingya to the southern Philippines.
From there, these operatives would form part of the IS terror group in Marawi City, Mindanao.
The second suspect, meanwhile, is a 27-year-old Malaysian woman, who was arrested together in Kota Kinabalu with the Filipino man.
The woman, who hails from Selangor had been recruited earlier this month through social media.
She later confessed that she and the Filipino man had planned to marry.
Police said the woman had departed from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) on Jan 13 to meet the Filipino in Kota Kinabalu, after which they had planned to fly to Sandakan before entering southern Philippines.
The third and fourth suspects, both Bangladeshis aged 27 and 28, worked as salesman, and were arrested last Thursday in Kuala Lumpur.
They were suspected of having ties to Bangladesh IS militants and were planning to join Dr Mahmud’s terror cell, the New Strait Times reported.