ALOR SETAR, April 27 — Most of the 61 Rohingya refugees who are still at large after escaping from the Sungai Bakap Immigration Detention Depot near Bandar Baharu on April 20 are believed to have a good knowledge of the situation in this country.

Kedah police chief, Commissioner of Police Wan Hassan Wan Ahmad said 50 of them had been in the country for between two to three years, thus, enabling them to know how to avoid detection and being detained again by the police.

Nevertheless, he said police would continue to escalate operations to detect the escapees, comprising 51 men, six women, three girls and a boy.

“Our operation is ongoing and we have flushed almost 90 per cent of the forest area and in Bandar Baharu. However, there has been no sign of the remaining detainees who are still at large for the past two days.

“Lately, many of them were rearrested in Penang and we believe they are in South Seberang Perai district and its surrounding areas,” he told reporters here today

He said this when asked to comment on the latest development of an operation to track down the remaining Rohingya escapees.

Wan Hassan said police also did not rule out the possibility that the 50 detainees had knowledge of the ins and outs of this country and made plans accordingly to avoid detection by using women and children.

“Look at the way they escaped... they went to the South Seberang Perai highway and not to areas around Bandar Baharu because they already have knowledge of this country,” he said.

Meanwhile, Wan Hassan said an investigation on the detainee believed to be the mastermind behind the incident, who has been rearrested, was still ongoing and no information could be disclosed for the time being.

Wan Hassan said this when met at the breaking of fast ceremony of the Kedah Police Contingent Headquarters which was also attended by Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor. — Bernama