Bukit Aman anti-terror chief says Malaysia has own yardstick to classify groups such as LTTE

Syed Jaymal Zahiid
Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division (E8) principal assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay holds a press conference after speaking at IFCTF 2019 in Kuala Lumpur November 5, 2019. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 — Bukit Aman counter-terrorism chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said today Malaysian authorities have their own standards to identify security risks, even if Washington no longer viewed the LTTE as a terror group.

Ayob said the police have “solid” standard operating procedures and security guidelines to measure such threats, as he defended the arrests of local suspects allegedly linked to the now-defunct Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

“We are a sovereign nation, we have our own SOP and it is solid,” the Bukit Aman anti-terror chief told reporters at the 2019 International Conference on Financial Crime and Terrorism Financing (IFCTF) here.

Some reports suggest the LTTE has been removed from Washington’s list of terror organisations, although Malay Mail could not verify this at the time of writing.

Earlier this month, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it is continuously monitoring organisations that allegedly support and promote terrorism activities around the world, and not just the Sri Lanka-based LTTE.

Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said the ministry took into consideration many factors to determine whether an organisation promoted terrorism, or otherwise.

Last month, police arrested Seremban Jaya assemblyman P. Gunasekaren and Gadek assemblyman G. Saminathan, among others, on suspicion of supporting the LTTE.

The LTTE was a separatist group that had been active in Sri Lanka until it was officially defeated in 2009. It has been classified as a terrorist group by 32 countries including Malaysia, which did so in 2014.

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