Outpouring of anger, outrage over killing of Malaysian Bernard Then by Abu Sayyaf

Bernard Then, a Sarawakian electrical consultant working in Cambodia, was abducted by gunmen believed to be linked to the Abu Sayyaf militant group.
Bernard Then, a Sarawakian electrical consultant working in Cambodia, was abducted by gunmen believed to be linked to the Abu Sayyaf militant group. PHOTO: SINCHEW

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - There has been an outpouring of anger and outrage from the public over the killing of Malaysian hostage Bernard Then by his Abu Sayyaf captors.

Calling it an "act of evil", many took to the Facebook to vent their anger at the kidnappers with some even vowing "that they will surely pay for this".

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, in a Facebook post on Wednesday, said he and all Malaysians were " shocked and sickened" by Mr Then's murder, condemning it "in its strongest terms" and extending his prayers and condolences to Mr Then's family and friends.

"We call upon authorities to take action against those who have perpetrated this savage and barbaric act and ensure that they are brought to justice. We will also extend our full cooperation to relevant agencies and authorities in charge on the investigation of this incident," he added.

Iskandar Fren Knuckle said this was getting out of hand, adding that the leader of the militant did not belong to the Muslim world.

"Abu Sayyaf doesn't belong to the Muslim world, truly an act of evil. Condolences to the family," he wrote.

Azmi Ar said he hoped that Mr Then's next of kin would be patient and accept what had happened.

"It is devastating but they should stay strong and continue with their lives. The perpetrators will surely pay for this," he said.

Gim Chee Ooi urged the government to use some of its resources to eradicate these evil beings, saying: "Kill all of them without mercy please."

Tinesh Rajah deemed the situation the government is akin to that of being "stuck between a rock and a hard place".

"Paying ransom only fuels the terrorists' activity, not paying would mean the death of a fellow Malaysian. My deepest condolences," he commented.

Some voiced their frustration against the Malaysian security forces, asking when they could assure the safety of the shores of Sabah, which is prone to kidnapping cases.

"For goodness' sake, when can Malaysian armed forces start securing the shores of Sabah?" questioned Eaglet Uno.

Sharif Fisalluddin Shawal asked when Sabah and Sarawak would be getting security assets to protect their shores with the rise of such kidnapping cases.

"Terrorists at our doorstep and yet, nothing is being done about it. So sad to hear this news," commented Lizon De Wolfe.

Sathan Ramasamy said he hoped that the Malaysian government would supply the military with proper equipment to secure Sabah from further invasion and abduction.

"Condolences to the family. Esscom (Eastern Sabah Security Command) needs to deploy more human intelligence on the ground," commented Name Deuter.

Malaysia's Parliament on Wednesday expressed its condolences and sympathies to the family of Mr Then.

MP Stephen Wong (DAP-Sandakan), who stood up and requested to observe a minute of silence, was told by Deputy Speaker Ronald Kiandee that a minute's silence was usually observed for heads of states or lawmakers.

"However, the Dewan Rakyat would like to record its sympathies to the family of Then that is facing a trying time," said Mr Kiandee.