Malaysia deports seven over alleged Al-Qaeda link

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) – The Malaysian authorities have deported six Egyptians and a Tunisian to their home countries on March 5 as their presence here could threaten the national security.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun said the seven foreigners were among nine individuals detained in several operations carried out by the Special Branch’s Counter-Terrorism division in the Klang Valley and Sarawak, between February 2 and 9, and suspected to be involved in terrorist groups.

The other two arrested were Malaysians.

He said the operations were carried out following information obtained from several foreign intelligence agencies over the presence of several foreign terrorist fighters suspected of being members of the Ansar Al-Shariah Al-Tunisia, a part of Al-Qaeda terror group.

“As the presence of these foreigners in Malaysia could threaten the national security, the suspects have been deported to their home countries under Section 9 (1) of the Immigration Act 1959/63 on March 5,” Mohamad Fuzi said in a statement yesterday.

He said the suspects would also be blacklisted for life from entering Malaysia.

“The five Egyptians detained admitted that they are members the Muslim Brotherhood Al Ikhwanul Muslimin who acted as facilitators in providing lodging, transportation, employment and help purchase airline tickets to two Ansar Al-Shariah Al-Tunisia members,” said Mohamad Fuzi.

He was referring to the arrest of two members of the terrorist group, an Egyptian and a Tunisian, aged 21 and 22, in Kuala Lumpur on February 4.

On February 2, police detained six suspects in several raids, namely, an Egyptian man, a local man and a woman, all three aged 20 to 54, in Serian, Sarawak; an Egyptian man, 42, in Setapak; and two Egyptian students, aged 24 and 28, in Bukit Bintang and Seri Kembangan, Selangor.