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North Borneo uprising is crushed
Published on: Friday, December 14, 1962

NORTH BORNEO NEWS & SABAH TIMES - (Friday, December 14, 1962) - LABUAN, Thursday: The Commander of the British Forces in Borneo said here today the main strongholds of rebel army had been crushed. 

Brigadier Jack Glennie told a news conference that the 6-day old Northern Borneo National Army uprising now had reached mopping-up stage. 

He said the hardcore guerrillas were fleeing into the jungles for what may be guerrila war. 

However, he said, it was too soon to say if there will be a long guerrila campaign. 

A British Navy spokesman said six hostages including two women had been freed from Limbang, Sarawak, yesterday. 

The spokesman said the rebels were about to hand the Resident of Limbang, Mr Richard Morris and two others when an assault came yesterday. RAF Hawker Hunter jet fighters hit low-level passes over Limbang apparently panicking the rebels. 

The British fired no shots. 

One Woman captive was Dorothy Morris, wife of the Resident. There was no word on the conditions of the freed hostages. They are all believed to be British. 

Brigadier Glennie said the British army troops were driven down on the West Coast of Sarawak from Miri to Sibuti area, 15 miles away in clearing operations there today. He said there were five British casualties and he was not sure whether all coastal towns were now in British hands. 

Brigadier Glennie said the Shell Oilfields, Seria, have now been reoccupied and the curfew being lifted gradually. Glennie said the Brunei jail, 15 miles west of Brunei Town was retaken without resistance Thursday. He said three persons were still in their cells. 

He said the rebels had released a number of prisoners before they fled, leaving the jail unguarded. 

Brigadier Glennie obviously pleaded with the Gurkha Commandos in the army units which are clearing out the rebel pockets and trying to head off those seeking refuge in the jungle.

 He said: “The main rebel strength in the rebellion has been crushed. The mopping-up stage has been reached.” 

He estimated 25 sets of rebels are hardcore of whom many are believed to be aiming at setting up guerrilla operations in the jungle area in Brunei and north-east Sarawak. The guerrilla strength is estimated to be 2,000.

Brigadier Glennie said the curfew is gradually being lifted in Brunei Town and oilfield centre of Seria, Brunei. He said there was one pocket of rebels at Muar, nortern most point in Brunei, but added he did not know actual strength. 

JAKARTA: The Indonesian Government yesterday posted a round-the-clock armed guard on the British Embassy here as a result of the uprising in Brunei.

 The British Ambassador Sir Leslie Fry described action as “precautionary - nothing out of ordinary in view of the circumstances. 

SERIA: Europeans liberated from Seria police station yesterday said members of the rebel “Northern Borneo National Army” had told them the main motive behind the staging of revolt was to prevent the formation of the Federation of Malaysia. 

Anglican Clergyman Rev John Vyvyan said one rebel told him: “We do not want Malaysia - we will not have it and we are willing to die in opposition to it.” 

The Federation of Malaysia is scheduled to come into being by the merger of Malaya, Singapore, Sarawak and North Borneo and possibly Brunei before August 31st next year.

“The rebels spoke of Inche A.M. Azahari, leader of Brunei’s Party Rakyat, as their leader but none of them seem to know anything about his movements,” Rev Vyvyan said.

He said other liberated hostages said the rebels had told them they had a radio set on which they were sending out appeals for help to Indonesia and the Philippines.

Although the rebels were previously extremely pro-Indonesian there was no definite evidence that any Indonesian was among the rebel force or that the revolt was being staged with active Indonesian support.





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