Friday March 22, 2013
Hisham shrugs off PKR claims on Azzimudie
PUTRAJAYA: Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein (pic) has brushed aside claims by PKR that Azzimudie Kiram, who led the intrusion of Sulu gunmen into Sabah, held a Malaysian citizenship and had once worked in the Kudat land and district office.
The Home Minister said it is up to PKR to verify its claim with the relevant authorities.
Hishammuddin stressed, however, that the Government will not treat one terrorist different from another even if it is proven the individual concerned is a Malaysian.
“A terrorist is a terrorist, whether he is a Malaysian or not.
“What is important is that he has done something against the country. That is my consideration ... whatever action we take is based on the sovereignty and security of the country,” he said at a press conference at his office here yesterday.
PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli had claimed on Wednesday there was documented evidence that Azzimudie, also known as Agbimudin, is a Malaysian and had served as a junior administrative officer in Kudat in 1974.
Meanwhile, Hishammuddin said the Government is working out a mechanism to integrate the roles of the civilian, military and police authorities in propping up secu- rity under the newly-established Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscomm).
He said the Government has taken immediate steps to establish Esscomm, which will be headquartered at Lahad Datu and will include setting up of cabins as temporary bases of operation and new police stations.
There would also be Customs, Immigration and Quarantine centres and also placement of the five battalions of security forces under the command.
Hishammuddin said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is expected to make more announcements related to Esscomm soon.
Regarding the ongoing Ops Daulat to flush out remnants of the gunmen, he said Malaysian authorities have so far arrested 350 people, including the eight who were charged on Wednesday for terrorism and waging war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
He added that the Philippines coast guard had also detained 38 people who had allegedly attempted to escape Malaysian security forces and seized a cache of weapons in their waters.
Hishammuddin said there are an estimated 30 to 50 insurgents believed to still be holed up in Kampung Tanjung Batu and Kampung Tanjung Labian.