Published: Sunday February 17, 2013 MYT 6:14:00 PM
Lahad Datu standoff: Foreign gunmen ask for meeting with prominent figure
LAHAD DATU:The foreign gunmen from southern Philippines cornered in Kampung Tanduo have asked for a meeting with a prominent figure before deportation.
Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib said the police were making concerted efforts to arrange the meeting.
"We can't say when they will be deported but they have accepted it," he told reporters at General Operations Force (GOF) security post in Felda Sahabat, about 100 km from here on Sunday.
The foreigners claiming to be from the Sulu Sultanate Army said they did not want people of Sulu descent in Sabah sent back to their country of origin.
Hamza said that the situation has remained unchanged and efforts are being done to facilitate their deportation back to the Philippines.
"There is no negotiation because they are demanding on the wrong platform and should do it on a specific forum."
Hamza reiterated that the security situation in Sabah, especially Kampung Tanduo was under control of the Malaysian security forces.
On dissatisfaction of some people by the approach taken by security forces, he said it was in line with the government approach to settle issues via negotiation.
"We need to see the situation from many perspectives as we are negotiating with human beings. Moreover, most of them, whether they come from southern Philippines or Sabah, are inter related.
"What are their feelings if we take action against one of them," said Hamza.
In KLUANG, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said he was confident that the deportation of the foreign gunmen in Lahad Datu would be done without bloodshed.
He believed that the security forces were capable of handling the issue and the so-called Sulu Sultanate Army would be deported home safely. "Let the authorities with the expertise and responsibility resolve it without bloodshed. If anyone is killed, then the government and authorities will stand accused," he said after attending the Paloh constituency Chinese New Year celebration at SJKC Paloh here Sunday. - Bernama
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