Will Malaysian Terrorists Turn Southeast Asia Into An Islamic State?
In their latest plot to expand their movement, three Malaysian terrorists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have revealed their wishes to start an Islamic State in Southeast Asia (SEA)
According to a report by The Malaysian Insider, the trio behind this alarming plan are former Universiti Malaya lecturer Dr Mahmud Ahmad, sundry shop owner Mohd Najib Husen and former Selayang Municipal Council employee Muhammad Joraimee Awang Raimee.
The three Malaysian terrorists, are allegedly focused on collaborating with all the major terrorist organisations in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines to start a Southeast Asian Islamic state.
The Malaysian terrorist trio, were reportedly looking at a possible collaboration with two main, established, militant groups, namely, Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiah
The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) is known to be the most dangerous terrorist group in the Philippines, infamous for their constant kidnappings for ransom, assassinations, and bombings.
In 2000, ASG kidnapped 21 people from a resort in Pulau Sipadan, Sabah and demanded multiple ransoms in the form of millions of dollars and release of the terrorist behind in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, Ramzi Yousef.
Abu Sayyaf terrorists are also the ones that bombed the Superferry 14 in the Philippines in 2004, killing 116 people, thus making it Philippines' worst terrorist attack and the world's most lethal terrorist attack on sea to date.
Jemaah Islamiah (JI), on the other hand, is an Islamic terrorist group that operates from major South East Asian countries, including Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
These terrorists are responsible for the atrocious 2002 Bali bombings in Indonesia's popular tourist spot, Kuta, that killed 202 instantly and injured 209 more people.
In order to establish an Islamic State here, the leader spearheading the plan, needs to swear his allegiance to ISIS supremo, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in Syria
“He (Mahmud) has performed the ‘bai’ah’ or the oath of allegiance on video but to form the Southeast Asian cell of Isis, Mahmud has to travel to Syria and swear his allegiance in front of Isis supremo Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi," said Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter-Terrorism division head Datuk Ayob Khan.
“We discovered through intelligence sharing that going to Syria is his priority now.”
ISIS has been actively luring in Malaysians to join the terrorist group and last year the local authorities managed to stop three enthusiastic Malaysian Jihadists from joining the Islamic State:
Meanwhile, Ayob thinks Malaysian IS members will have difficulty in launching attacks here as they do not possess the technical skills to assemble bombs
The lack of technical expertise to devise bombs serves as a handicap to locals affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) militants from launching attacks in the country.
"Nevertheless, Malaysian IS-aligned members are believed to have strong ideological commitment.
"Although lacking in technical expertise, Malaysian IS members should not be given a chance to launch an attack in the country," he (Ayob) told reporters after a briefing on IS terrorists at the Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) Kedah auditorium in Alor Setar today.
In contrary to that, intelligence reports revealed that Malaysian ISIS members, are being upgraded from mere janitors into suicide bombers and assisting with terrorist missions in Iraq
Previously cleaners and guards at the camps, Malaysians who fell for the IS’ promise of a false “jihad” are now being trained to become snipers and suicide bombers with the specific goal of regaining its grip on Iraq.
Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division head Senior Asst Comm Datuk Ayub Khan said the terror group now counted on some Malaysians to carry out its special ops missions all over Iraq.
SAC Ayub said the Malaysian militants were plucked from the Khatibah Nusantara cell in Syria to join the special ops squads.
Moreover, Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein, today, 16 November, revealed that, IS terrorists are planning to kidnap some Malaysians leaders for "crossing religious boundaries"
Hishammuddin Hussein said he was among those on the list and that the information had been revealed to him by the country’s national security bodies in March this year before the joint Asean Defence Ministers meeting in Langkawi, The Star Online reported.
“I confirm that IS is targeting our leaders, but the threat will not stop us from continuing to fight terrorism in the country and region,” he said at a Deepavali open house here yesterday.
A Bukit Aman official said others on the list included senior Cabinet members and added, “We found out about their master plan when questioning IS member Murad Halimuddin.
“Murad said they wanted to kidnap the leaders whom they regard as tagut (those who have crossed religious boundaries).”
Responding to that, the authorities have promised to tighten nationwide security, especially with Malaysia set to host the Asean Summit, that will see the gathering of prominent world leaders in Kuala Lumpur, next week
All police branches and divisions are doubling their efforts as they prepare to host United States President Barack Obama, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and a host of other world leaders at the weekend summit to be held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar also said police were working with neighbouring countries to foil the alleged plans of lecturer-turned-terrorist Dr Mahmud Ahmad, who was reportedly forming an Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (Isis) terror bloc in Southeast Asia.
In a report in July, after police here arrested two Malaysians linked to Isis, Khalid had warned that intelligence had revealed that the suspects were planning attacks in Malaysia.
Meanwhile, shedding light on Malaysian ISIS members' plans to create an Islamic State here, criminologist P. Sundramoorthy, thinks that they are driven more by social inequalities and injustices and are just using Islam as a shield and tool to extort money
Criminologist P. Sundramoorthy told The Sunday Times that he believed the Malaysian militants' attempt to form an inter-nation terror group was due to the fact that they have been unable to gain sufficient support from any individual country.
Associate Professor Sundramoorthy, who is from Universiti Sains Malaysia's Research Team on Crime and Policing, said these militants have now gone beyond the scope of religion.
"Many still think IS champions the rights of Islam but it has got to do with social injustice, economic inequalities, political suppression and other reasons. But unfortunately, religion has been used as an anchor to all these motivations," he said.
To stem the growth of such terror groups, Prof Sundramoorthy said international efforts are needed to address the root causes, such as social injustice, so as to prevent divisions in society that may lead to problems of terrorism.
Recent events have proven that terror attacks are fast becoming the realities of many countries in the world. Last Friday, 14 November, a series of terror attacks were launched in various parts of Paris that has killed more than 120 people: