Malaysia working to bring home 40 citizens detained in Syria, Latest World News - The New Paper

Malaysia working to bring home 40 citizens detained in Syria

This article is more than 12 months old

KUALA LUMPUR: Police in Malaysia are working to bring home 40 Malaysians who are looking to return after being detained for suspected involvement in terrorism activities in Syria.

Special Branch Counter-Terrorism Division chief Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said : "A total of 40 from 65 Malaysians detained in Syria had contacted us and told us they want to come home.

"We expect the number of those who want to return to rise from time to time.

"We have obtained information that the camps in Syria are in critical situation, especially due to food shortage."

Of the 40, 11 are men, and the rest are women and children, he told reporters.

Deputy Commissioner Ayob Khan said police could be involved only in the early stage of efforts to bring the Malaysians home, but the final say would be with the government and the communication process with foreign agencies, The Star reported.

"The men are now being held at Al-Hasakah prison while the women and children are placed at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees camp," he said.

In October last year, police successfully brought home a Malaysian woman and two of her children, a Malaysian man and another Malaysian woman whose husband, an Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group member, was killed during warfare.

DC Ayob Khan said the Malaysian men brought home will be charged in court while for the women, it will depend on the level of influence they were under.

The children, meanwhile, will undergo rehabilitation programmes, he added.


In a separate case, Malaysia has detained five more Malaysians for what police said were followers and sympathisers of the defunct Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam terror group of Sri Lanka.

This brings the total number of people arrested to 12.