Malaysian police to tighten security at borders after martial law declared in Philippines' Mindanao

Filipino soldiers sit in military trucks on their way for reinforcement in Iligan city, Mindanao.
Filipino soldiers sit in military trucks on their way for reinforcement in Iligan city, Mindanao.PHOTO: EPA

KUALA LUMPUR (BERNAMA) - Malaysian police will tighten security at the nation's borders, especially in the waters near the Philippines, following the declaration of martial law by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte in the Mindanao region.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said, however, that the department will not increase the number of personnel required for the task.

"We have taken precautions, and are always aware of what is happening in the Philippines," he told Bernama on Wednesday (May 24).

Following the declaration, Philippines military has ordered more than 200,000 people in the city of Marawi, Mindanao to leave their homes.

 

The order was issued shortly after Duterte's spokesman, Ernesto Abella made an announcement on Tuesday on behalf of the president declaring martial law in the region, after fierce clashes between the army and ISIS-linked militants.

Meanwhile, a local resident who requested anonymity said that most residents concurred with the military command, and had moved to the cities of Zamboanga, Pagadian and Cotabato, about 10 to 12 hours away from Marawi.

The resident, when contacted by the Bernama News Channel via WhatsApp, said there were many military roadblocks and tight security checks along the roads to identify militants.

President Duterte had earlier warned that martial law in Mindanao could be enforced for even up to a year if required, to curb terrorism.