Singapore bans book promoting armed jihad that helped radicalise ex-NSF

The book helped radicalise an ex-NSF who was detained under the Internal Security Act in March, 2021, the Ministry of Communications and Information said. — TODAY pic
The book helped radicalise an ex-NSF who was detained under the Internal Security Act in March, 2021, the Ministry of Communications and Information said. — TODAY pic

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SINGAPORE, June 24 — A publication promoting armed jihad and containing extremist views that foster enmity among different religious communities has been gazetted as a prohibited publication under Singapore’s Undesirable Publications Act.

The publication is titled Menyingkap Rahsia Tentera Elit Briged Izzuddin Al-Qassam: Generasi Muda Perindu Syahid, which translates as Uncovering the secrets of the Izz Ad-Din Al Qassam Brigades Elite Force: The Young Generation of Seekers of Martyrdom.

The authorities said previously that the book glorified the exploits of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades (AQB), the military wing of the Islamist movement Hamas, in Palestine.

The publication came to the Government’s attention during investigations into 20-year-old Amirull Ali in March 2021, the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI) said in a media release on Thursday (June 24).

Amirull, who was detained under the Internal Security Act in March and a former former full-time national serviceman (NSF), had bought the publication overseas in 2015.

Investigations have revealed that reading the publication was one of the factors that led to his radicalisation, the ministry added.

Amirull had been plotting an attack on Maghain Aboth Synagogue on Waterloo Street (left) using knives (right). — TODAY file and Internal Security Department pix
Amirull had been plotting an attack on Maghain Aboth Synagogue on Waterloo Street (left) using knives (right). — TODAY file and Internal Security Department pix

The publication is authored by Abdul Aziz Abu Bakar and Adnan M El Halabi, and was published by Hijjaz Records Publishing in 2015. The prohibition will take effect from Friday.

“The Singapore Government has zero tolerance for individuals or publications that aim to incite hostility or violence among different religious groups,” MCI said.

In a Facebook post today, Josephine Teo, Minister for Communications and Information who gazetted the publication, said: “Singapore has enjoyed peace as a multi-racial and multi-religious society due to our steadfast efforts to foster mutual trust and understanding among different community groups. We must not take for granted the unity in diversity.”

Teo also urged continued vigilance, adding that Singaporeans must “keep careful watch over the young to protect our future as one people”.

It is an offence for anyone to possess or come into possession of a prohibited publication and fail to surrender the copy to the authorities. Those convicted could be liable to a fine, imprisonment or both.

“Members of the public who are in possession of the publication should hand them to the police,” MCI said. — TODAY

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