KUALA LUMPUR - Most Malaysian militants in Syria and Iraq have no qualms turning into suicide bombers as they believe it is the fastest path to martyrdom.
According to security sources, more than 69 Malaysians are in both countries in support of the Islamic State (IS) terror network.
"The ultimate aim of a militant is to become a martyr. And the best way is to become suicide bombers. They believe that such a sacrifice will absolve them of all their sins," a source told The Star yesterday.
So far, about 16 Malaysians have been killed in Syria and Iraq. Six of them were suicide bombers.
Sources said Mohd Amirul Ahmad Rahim, who was from Terengganu, ignited the bomb he had on him and in a car during a clash in Raqqa on Dec 29.
Mohamad Syazwan Mohd Salim targeted a military base in Iraq on Jan 3, 2014, killing Iraqi forces after he detonated his suicide vest along with six other IS fighters.
The terrifying trend of suicide bombers from Malaysia started with Pahang-born Ahmad Tarmimi Maliki, 26, who drove a military SUV filled with tonnes of explosives into the SWAT headquarters in al-Anbar, Iraq, last month, blowing himself up and killing 25 elite soldiers.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he was shocked and appalled to hear about the Malaysians reportedly involved in the suicide bombings.
"Their actions and ideology have no place in Malaysia or Islam, and the Government is absolutely committed to fighting terrorism in all its forms and guises, both at home and overseas.