Saturday, July 19, 2014

Malaysia: Home Minister Refuses to Pay Ransom for Abducted Marine Constable

According to http://www.dailyexpress.com.my, the Malaysian government has said that it will not bow to or entertain any ransom demand from the gunmen who kidnapped Marine Police Constable Zakia Aliep, 26, in an ambush in Pulau Mabul last Saturday (July 12).

Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the Government could not simply fulfil the demand of the kidnappers as it would be seen as encouraging them to get easy money through kidnapping. 

The home minister said the authorities had received a phone call from the kidnappers asking for 10 million in ransom money for the release of Zakia. 

"There was a call made by the kidnappers to the marine police in Sabah, asking for 10 million ransom, but it was not stated whether they wanted it in Philippine peso, US dollars or Malaysian ringgit. 

We, the government will not respond to that demand," he told reporters after being interviewed in the segment "Mesej Dari Penjara" in TV3's "Wanita Hari Ini" program. 

The 2310 hours incident in which  Marine police corporal Ab Rajah Jamuan, 32, was killed and Zakia kidnapped at the Mabul Water Bungalow Resort occurred at Pulau Mabul in Semporna, Sabah.  

COMMENT: Zakia is the fourth victim abducted in Sabah this year after the incidents at the Singamata Adventures Reef and Resort in Semporna, Pulau Baik in Lahad Datu and in Kampung Sapang, west of Pulau Timbun Mata, Kunak. 

Ahmad Zahid said the government was committed to enhancing security control in Sabah by deploying an additional 680 security forces personnel; 330 of whom from the Royal Malaysian Police and 350 from the Malaysian Armed Forces, in the Eastern Sabah Security Command area. 

Ahmad Zahid said based upon investigations thus far, the ambush was initially focused on kidnapping the resort owner, but the presence of security force personnel at the resort forced the kidnappers to shift their targets to the two Marine police officers.