ASEAN nations have own concerns about terrorism


KUALA LUMPUR - The problem of terrorism has confronted ASEAN countries in different ways.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said a discussion with Thailand, the Philip­pines and Indonesia revealed that they, like Malaysia, had to ­tackle terrorism-related issues but each one had a different concern.

"For instance, Thailand is a transit country for the terrorists in ASEAN to go to other countries, while the Philippines has a few groups of militants who are training fighters for foreign causes," he told a press conference after chairing the Special ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on the Rise of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism (SAMMRRAVE) here yesterday.

"Malaysia is also affected where some Malaysians were getting involved in terror activities abroad. We have 131 terrorists in detention in Malaysia and, of these, 110 are Malaysians."

The discussion resulted in Indo­nesia, Thailand and the Philip­pines choosing Malaysia to take the lead in planning and taking action to solve terror threats in the region.

On Malaysia's preparedness in countering terrorism threats, Dr Ahmad Zahid said: "We have countered, and we are ever ready to counter, terrorism threats."

He said the Government might just be able to achieve its aim of zero terrorism activities in Malaysia, once the Prevention of Terrorism Act (Pota) was enforced.

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