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Malaysia’s hunt for foreign terrorist fighters continues with more raids

Malaysia’s hunt for foreign terrorist fighters continues with more raids
Counter-terrorism operatives mounted its second round of raids last night to smoke out possible foreign terrorist fighters (FTF) who could be hiding inthe country. NSTP file photo

Malaysia’s hunt for foreign terrorist fighters continues with more raids

CYBERJAYA (Malaysia) — Counter-terrorism operatives in Malaysia mounted its second round of raids on Wednesday night (Aug 9) to smoke out possible foreign terrorist fighters (FTF) who could be hiding in the country.

This time, the operatives from Bukit Aman’s Counter-Terrorism Division (E8) also brought along Personal Radiation devices (PRD) to detect radioactive materials.

Its chief, Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay, who led the raid said the devices used in the massive operations last night were also useful to his men as they had previously entered target areas at the risk of being exposed to radioactive materials.

“With the devices we would be able to detect radioactive materials beforehand and retreat to call in specialists to neutralise the area,” he said.

Mr Ayob said the PRD, also known as the RadEye, would also be used during the upcoming SEA Games to detect possible terror elements involving the use of radioactive materials.

Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) director-general Hamrah Mohd Ali said a total of 95 PRDs, eight radiation backpacks and eight hand-held identifiers would be used by the police during the games.

The PRD, costing about 5,000 euros (S$8,011.55) each is a sensitive device that can detect radiation within a 50m radius. Those packed in backpacks can be used to scan larger areas.

“Policemen and AELB officers who are trained to use the devices will be deployed to event venues, officials’ accommodations and airports, to detect possible threats,” Mr Ayob said, adding that X-ray machines would also be used to check for weapons.

During the operations, the police’s E8, along with Internal Security and Public Order Department, forensics, the K9 unit, Special Action (UTK) and Bomb Disposal units were deployed to Neo Cyber, a commercial area. The raids started at 9pm.

The police team were also joined by personnel fron AELB as well as the Immigration and National Registration departments.

Mr Ayob said the operation targeted Cyberjaya as there were possibilities of the presence of FTFs from Syria and Iraq.

More than 100 foreigners especially from “high-risk” countries such including Syria and Iraq were rounded up and taken to Sepang district police station for screening.

“We will go through the database to ensure that they are not in the wanted list of FTFs that we are tracking down,” Mr Ayob told reporters when met at the operation.

The operation saw doors being broken down, policemen entering shops and shophouses being checked.

The team also conducted checks on passing cars to make sure they did not miss any foreigners.

It reported that authorities believed that at least 16 FTFs deported from Turkey in recent months, could be hiding in the country. NEW STRAITS TIMES