PRESS RELEASE: THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA STRONGLY REJECTS ALLEGATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES IN SABAH
The Malaysian Government strongly rejects allegations of human rights abuses in Sabah, Malaysia as recently reported by some Media in the Philippines.
The allegations published by Inquirer, one of the dailies in the Philippines on 9 and 10 March 2013, in particular have been found to be unjustified and unsubstantiated, and those reports clearly run counter to professional journalism. The reported allegations are fabrication of lies by those whose intention are to damage and strain the good and close relations between Malaysia and the Republic of the Philippines.
The Chief of Royal Malaysian Police in Sabah, who is one of the top police officials overseeing the operation against the armed militant intruders in Lahad Datu and surrounding areas, had on 10 March 2013 categorically denied those allegations. That statement was confirmed on 11 March 2013 by the Minister of Defence of Malaysia, who also strongly denied allegations that the Malaysian security apparatus are randomly targeting Filipinos of Suluk/Tausug descent in Sabah.
The Malaysian Government wishes to assure all concerned that the Malaysian authorities continue to act in accordance with the applicable domestic laws and international law in discharging their responsibilities in the face of blatant aggression by the armed militant group from the neighbouring southern Philippines.
It needs no reminding that the armed militant group had committed acts of terrorism in their brutal killing and atrocities in Lahad Datu and Semporna, Sabah. With the strong support of all Malaysians, the Malaysian authorities will remain steadfast in their endeavour to protect peace, security, as well as Malaysia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The Malaysian Government has also taken and will continue to undertake all necessary measures to ensure humanitarian needs of all civilians in the concerned areas are fully addressed.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
13 March 2013