Putrajaya to step up border control operations on Malaysia-Thailand border after shooting

Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob says there may be a need to expand the efforts of Op Benteng targeting undocumented migrants and their traffickers along the northern border of the Peninsular Malaysia following yesterday’s shootout. — Bernama pic
Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob says there may be a need to expand the efforts of Op Benteng targeting undocumented migrants and their traffickers along the northern border of the Peninsular Malaysia following yesterday’s shootout. — Bernama pic

PUTRAJAYA, Nov 25 — There may be a need to expand the efforts of Op Benteng targeting undocumented migrants and their traffickers along the northern border of the Peninsular Malaysia following yesterday’s shootout, Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said today.

He said the current convention is the division of tasks, duties, and patrol areas between the various government bodies and agencies including the Armed Forces and the police, with no overlapping of area and personnel in between.

“For example in Wang Kelian, Perlis the army and police have different areas to cover, while Kelantan falls under the jurisdiction of the police,” Ismail said during his press conference.

Similarly the coast and sea is guarded by the marine police, the navy, and the Maritime Enforcement Agency, among others.

“I will discuss this with the national taskforce in charge of monitoring the border under Op Benteng. We may need to relook at things, including the practice of comprehensive cooperation between all the agencies and bodies.

“If this is the case, this means each agency or body will no longer solely focus on areas assigned to them. I also believe there is a need to increase the security level and number of personnel on duty, be it from the Army or police,” he said.

Yesterday, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador confirmed the shootout, which occurred near the border of Malaysia and Thailand, occurred when the General Operations Forces personnel encountered drug smugglers.

The incident resulted in the fatal shooting of Corporal Baharuddin Ramli while his colleague Corporal Norihan Tari was left seriously wounded. Norihan was later treated at Tuanku Fauziah Hospital, Kangar.

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