KUALA LUMPUR - Seven suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants, including a 22-year-old man who was involved in clashes with Philippine security forces, were arrested in a series of anti-terror raids in Kuala Lumpur.
Malaysia's police chief Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun said the Filipino men, aged between 22 and 38, were detained on Sept 14.
The raids, he said, were a follow-up action after several ASG operatives were arrested recently.
The Straits Times reported that between July 4 and Aug 30, the Malaysian authorities have arrested 19 suspected terrorists, including eight ASG militants.
Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi on Sept 5 had said that two of the suspects had planned to launch attacks during the closing ceremony of the 29th SEA Games in Bukit Jalil and during Malaysia's National Day celebration on Aug 31 at Dataran Merdeka, a public square in Kuala Lumpur.
"All of them were working as security guards in private companies in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur. They snuck into Malaysia via Sandakan, Sabah in September 2015, before leaving for KL using forged travel documents," Mr Mohamad Fuzi said.
"One of the suspects, a 22-year-old man, was also involved in clashes with Philippine authorities and kidnappings in southern Philippines."
Mr Mohamad Fuzi added that 41 foreign fighters have been arrested by Special Branch's Counter Terrorism Division since early this year.
"The Royal Malaysian Police will continue its operations against foreign terrorists who sneak into the country either to go into hiding, raise funds, launch attacks, or use Malaysia as their hub to plan their attacks at other countries," he said.