Published: Friday March 15, 2013 MYT 7:20:00 PM
Updated: Friday March 15, 2013 MYT 7:32:19 PM
Lahad Datu: Najib - Malaysia did the right thing in handling of Sulu incursion
TANAH MERAH: No one can question the security forces' handling of the armed Sulu group's intrusion in Sabah, both in terms of the principles of international law or religious law, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said Friday.
He said Malaysia was on the side of the truth in defending the country's sovereignty from the terrorists.
"The Government is most careful in the matter and about what we are doing. Firstly, we gave the terrorists the opportunity to withdraw, in conformity with the rules of Islam.
"It is not that we wanted to see bloodshed, not that we wished to see lives sacrificed, but when we were attacked, we were obliged to defend ourselves.
"No one can question our right, either in terms of the principles of international law or religious law," he said at a lunch with the people after attending Friday prayers at the Masjid Mukim Batu 11, here.
Eight policemen and two soldiers have been killed in Sabah following the intrusion, which prompted the Government to launch an offensive after negotiations failed. Fifty-six terrorists were also killed.
Najib, who is on a one-day visit to Kelantan, said no one should deny the efforts of the Government or the security forces in the matter.
"Is it not the time for us, in keeping with our religious obligation, to give our undivided support to the security forces? It is because of them that we are able to defend the sovereignty of our beloved country.
"That's why I have no hesitance to give every consideration to ensure the well-being of the police and military," he said.
Najib said the security forces' personnel who were killed in the battlefield in Sabah were deemed to have died as martyrs as determined by the National Fatwa (Edicts) Council.
Najib said the decision he made five years ago to upgrade the Territorial Army to the Border Regiment reflected the concern of the Government in ensuring the well-being of the country's soldiers.
He said the move enabled these soldiers to enjoy the facilities given to the regular soldiers, such as pension after having served 21 years and housing loan. - Bernama
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