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On the lookout for Sayyaf
Published on: Thursday, November 01, 2018
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Kota Kinabalu: The Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) has confirmed a report by an online maritime news website that a group of armed terrorists from the Abu Sayyaf group may be on the prowl in Sabah's waters.Esscom commander Hazani Ghazali said they received similar intelligence from their counterparts that the group was planning to carry out kidnappings, primarily targeting businessmen or crew members of foreign vessels, off Sabah.

He said Esscom is on the alert and he had instructed all assets to be mobilised to keep a lookout and be on standby at all strategic points in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone).

"I urge the communities in Esszone to pass on information to Esscom immediately if they spot anything suspicious so that swift action can be taken.

"We assure the public that everything is under control," he told FMT.

The public is advised to contact the Esscom hotline at 089 – 863181 to report any suspicious activities.

MarineLink on Wednesday citing the Philippine Coast Guard, published an article on its website which stated that the ReCAAP ISC (Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery Information Sharing Centre) had received information that the Abu Sayyaf group was in Sabah's waters.

The article said a group of 10 Abu Sayyaf members, armed with pistols, rifles and grenade launchers, was planning kidnapping activities in Sabah.

The article added that the group was using unmarked blue-and-white coloured motor banca, locally known as "jungkong", which are speedboats specially designed for shallow waters.

"Shipmasters and their crew are strongly urged to exercise extra vigilance when transiting the waters off eastern Sabah and the Sulu-Celebes Seas," it said.

Photo Source: Wikipedia



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