Don't assume ship with fertiliser is linked to terrorists: Malaysia police chief

Indonesian workers unload sacks of ammonium nitrate illegally imported from Malaysia at a customs office in Denpasar, Bali, on Sept 22, 2016.
Indonesian workers unload sacks of ammonium nitrate illegally imported from Malaysia at a customs office in Denpasar, Bali, on Sept 22, 2016. PHOTO: EPA

PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia's Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar has advised the public against making quick assumptions that a Malaysian ship detained in Indonesia with 30 tonnes of fertiliser is linked to terrorists.

He gave his assurance that Malaysian authorities have contacted their Indonesian counterpart and are waiting for a report from them on the matter.

Mr Khalid said the public is advised against making assumptions that would tarnish the image of the country.

"Everywhere in the world ships are used to transport fertilisers… It isn't something abnormal. Fertilisers are used in the agricultural industry.

"We shouldn't jump to negative conclusions so quickly. Why are we so jumpy about a ship carrying fertilisers from Malaysia? Let us conduct thorough investigations first. We are not even sure if the ship and fertilisers are from Malaysia or other countries.

"Yes, I agree that it can be exploited to make explosives. But we shouldn't jump to conclusions as though our country is supplying fertiliser to terrorists, " he said at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre on Friday (Sept 23).

Mr Khalid said that it is also unlikely that 30 tonnes of fertiliser would be transported by way of shipping if the intended purpose was terrorism.

"The method of transportation would be different. For now we don't have any suspicions towards the ship.

"We are waiting to get details from them to ascertain whether the fertiliser was really intended for not-so-good purposes," he added.