Lahad Datu, Malaysia – Malaysian police’s final attempt to convince the Sulu group to leave Sabah pays off with the armed men denoting their strong will to go home.
Raja Muda Azzimudie Kiram, a descendant of the Sultan of Sulu reportedly heads the so-called Royal Sulu Sultanate Army, had more demands that police rejected, said Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib.
The Commissioner said, “They have agreed to go back but they wanted to meet certain personalities. We cannot accede to this,” but did not mention who the armed men wanted to meet.
He gave this statement after the briefing that Bukit Aman, Internal Security, and Public Order director Datuk Seri Salleh Mat Rasid gave at the General Operations Force at the Felda Sahabat land scheme, a short distance from where armed Filipinos have been held up called Kampung Tanduo.
For 2 hours top police officials met with 2 representatives of the armed Sulu group to learn about their latest demands.
Sabah Police Commissioner denied that some of the armed men got around the tight security cordon mounted by Malaysian police and military personnel.
Police continued to prepare for the deportation of the group. Hamza said, “we know where they are and they are surrounded.”
According to Hamza the Royal Sultanate of Sulu Army seek to be recognized and they demand that there would be no deportation of Suluk community, which had been staying for a long time in Sabah, resulting from the ongoing Royal Commission of Inquiry on the state’s illegal immigrant problem.
“We have told them this was the wrong platform and they will have to go back,” Hamza said.
Hamza then answered when questioned about the growing number of Malaysians expressing irritation about the situation through social networking sites, “we have to look at this from carious perspectives”.
“We are dealing with human beings. They are not militants and they came because of certain demands. If they come here as militants such as the Abu Sayyaf group, our approach would have been different,” Hamza said.
“Most of the people from Southern Philippines are also related to the people in Sabah,” he added.
Sultan Jamalul Kiram III reportedly told his brother, the Raja Muda Azzimudie Kiram, to stay at Kampung Tanduo, as quoted by Philippine media.
“That was his personal opinion,” Hamza said.
While the Philippine gorvernment recognizes Jamalul Kiram as the Sultan of Sulu, the Sulu considers Ismail Kiram, a relative of Jamalul, as their Sultan.