Batam terrorist plot shows how serious terrorism threat against Singapore is: Shanmugam

Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam said that counterterrorism was an ongoing process.
Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam said that counterterrorism was an ongoing process. PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER

SINGAPORE - The recent uncovering of terrorist plot to attack Singapore shows that people who want to do harm to Singapore are very serious about it, said Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam on Saturday (Aug 6).

He was speaking to reporters before a community event the day after Indonesia announced it had arrested a group of militants based on Batam who were planning to attack Marina Bay with a rocket.

"There are different types of plans being thought of, hatched, and all around us, the places where people can come together and plan to attack us," he said.

He listed three threats faced by Singapore: first, from those based outside Singapore with the means to attack the country from beyond its borders.

Second, there are 200 million people coming through Singapore's borders every year, a risk despite the "great job" that the Immigration Control Authority does.

Third, home-grown radicalised individuals pose a danger. "You can use knives, vehicles, and there are always people who believe that by doing these things, you are serving some higher cause," he said.

 
 

But Singapore has "zero tolerance" for these threats and is constantly working with its regional partners to fight terrorism, he said.

He added that counterterrorism was an ongoing process: "The threats, what you saw being foiled in Batam, this is the nature of things to come. This is a continuing thing. it's not going to go away.

"We need to get it right every single time. The terrorists only need to get it right once to make a statement," he said at the community club in Chong Pang, where he is a MP.