KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysians had transferred a total of RM50,000 (S$16,500) to bank accounts of extremist groups in Syria to support their fight and to help war victims, Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed said.
Social media tools including Facebook and Whatsapp had been used to solicit for the funds, he told a security forum in Beijing last Thursday.
Datuk Nur Jazlan said radical websites and the constant recruitment efforts by local militants had influenced young Malaysians.
But the threat of terrorism in Malaysia was under control as action had been taken to cripple the capabilities of local militant cells, he told the China-Asean Ministerial Dialogue on Law Enforcement and Security Cooperation.
He said that since 2001 the authorities had arrested 391 militants linked to Al-Qaeda, Jemaah Islamiyah, Darul Islam, Liberation of Tigers of Tamil Eelam and other groups. A total of 128 people linked to jihad activities in Iraq and Syria were among those captured.
"It is interesting to note that unlike previous recruitment which targeted individuals with religious background, current development suggests that people from all kinds of background who are willing to seek a shortcut to heaven are also included." he said.
"They include jobless individuals and drug addicts."
Meanwhile, a 55-year old woman was jailed for 30 months after being found guilty in court of supporting her son's terrorist activities in Syria through her Facebook account.
Azizah Md Yusof, a single mother, was sentenced after she pleaded guilty to the charges last Friday.
Police said that she had uploaded her son's status in Syria on her Facebook accounts and social media.
Defence counsel Suzalina Salleh told the court that Azizah's son had been killed in Syria.
High Court judge Kamardin Hashim ordered the sentences to run concurrently from the day Azizah was arrested on April 28 last year.
THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK