Foreign students among seven ISIS militants nabbed in Malaysia

Two of the seven suspects arrested by Malaysia's Counter Terrorism Division.
Two of the seven suspects arrested by Malaysia's Counter Terrorism Division. PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Four foreigners, including two students, were among seven people detained over suspected (ISIS) links between Nov 3 and Dec 16, Malaysian police said.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the suspects were picked up by the Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division following raids in Malacca, Selangor, Sabah and Johor.

Three of the foreigners were picked up in Selangor on Nov 3.

Two of them were students of Universiti Antarabangsa Al-Madinah in Shah Alam with one having been investigated by a foreign authority and attempting to obtain security information of a private school in the city.

"The third suspect was previously arrested by a security force of a Middle East country in 2010 for being involved with Al-Qaeda," Khalid said in a statement.

He said all three were deported to their home countries on Nov 22 and Nov 23.

The fourth foreigner, aged 26, was working as a factory operator in Johor. Khalid said he was arrested on Dec 8 for joining the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and attempting to smuggle weapons into Poso, Indonesia.

He had also tried to enter Myanmar illegally to launch an attack, Khalid added.

The Malaysian suspects comprised a 24-year-old man who was arrested in Malacca on Nov 26.

"We believe he was receiving orders from known militant Mohamad Wanndy Mohamad Jedi to carry out attacks on entertainment outlets in Malacca and Kuala Lumpur.

"He also received tutelage on how to make improvised explosive devices (IED) from another militant in Syria - Muhammad Nasrullah Abd Latif also known as Abu Gomes," said Khalid.

The others were a 24-year-old lorry driver, who was arrested on Dec 16, and believed to be planning attacks on entertainment outlets in Kuala Lumpur and a 35-year-old furniture factory worker, who was nabbed in Kota Kinabalu on Nov 16, for joining an ISIS cell in Sabah.