KOTA KINABALU - A policeman was reported killed and another believed to have been kidnapped by gunmen after a shootout with the police at the diving haven of Mabul island off Semporna in the east coast of Sabah.
The shootout occurred just before midnight when eight gunmen in military fatigue landed on the island around 11.30pm Saturday.
Initial reports to the Semporna police indicated that one of the policemen involved in the shootout might have been kidnapped.
Divers staying in resorts in the island reported that they had heard gunshots.
There have been several attempts by Filipino gunmen to breach security around Mabul island - a favourite diving destination in the east coast of Sabah.
Last week, security was put on heightened alert following a kidnap attempt by seven gunmen at a fish farm off Kampung Bangau Bangau in Semporna.
Fish farm owners were ordered to move out of their farms and at least seven gunmen were reported to still be in the area.