Lahad Datu incident will be resolved as soon as possible, says Deputy IGP

LAHAD DATU, Feb 26 – Police have assured that the intrusion by a group of armed Filipinos in Kampung Tanduo, some 130km from Lahad Datu town, will be resolved as soon as possible.

Without specifying exactly when it would end, Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the episode which had been ongoing since Feb 12 would be resolved as soon as possible and advised the public not to be worried.

Asked on the action to be taken after the expiry of the period given by the authorities to the group last Sunday, Khalid only said: “Wait and see”.

He said that action could be taken at any time on  the 150 intruders who remained in Kampung Tanduo and refused to leave.

“We will end the present stand-off and I advise people not to worry. God willing, we will solve the matter as soon as possible,” he told reporters here today.

When asked whether the negotiations were still going on with the group, Khalid said: “I do not want to comment on that matter (negotiation)”.

Khalid also said police did not know anything about the claims by some parties that four Kiram family members (relatives of the Sultanate of Sulu) were purportedly arrested by the authorities.

Earlier, after receiving a briefing on the progress of the incident in Komtek Sahabat 16, Battalion 17, the General Operations Force (PGA) Felda Sahabat, he explained that the incursion by a group, claiming to be the soldiers of the Sultanate of Sulu, was still under the responsibility of the Malaysian Police (PDRM).

He said the incident was still being handled as a national security issue and operations also involved other security agencies.

“The situation here is still as usual and the purpose of my visit this morning was just to meet my people on the ground,” he said.

Also present at the press conference were Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order Department director, Datuk Seri Salleh Mat Rashid, First Infantry Division Commander Major Gen Datuk Mohd Zaki Mokhtar and Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib.

Khalid said so far there were no external elements interfering in police efforts to resolve the issue, stressing it would not permit any such intervention in national security affairs. – Bernama


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