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Sabah Conflict

Malaysia may seek extradition of Sulu Sultan over Sabah violence - report

March 7, 2013 4:50am
Malaysia may seek the "extradition" of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III and his group due to the violence in Sabah between Kiram's followers and Malaysian security forces. The fighting has been going on since March 1 with total fatalities now numbering around 24.

In a Malaysian television interview, Malaysian foreign minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman said this possibility had been "put forward" to his Filipino counterpart Albert del Rosario.

"The group's leader has made statements that have incited anger and hatred. Does the Philippines have laws to bring him to justice? If not, maybe we will ask the Philippines to hand him over to us," he said on a talk show on Malaysia's TV3 Wednesday night, according to a report on state-run Bernama news agency.

While he noted the Philippines and Malaysia do not have an extradition treaty, he said that "in the spirit of (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations), we can request for them to be brought here."

Any legal action will be based on what is "right and good" for both the Philippines and Malaysia, he added.

"Our options are open until we move to another level, make decision and hold discussions with the Philippines," he said.

Kiram's forces are now being hunted by Malaysian forces following bloody clashes last March 1 and 2.

On Tuesday, Malaysian forces assaulted an area where Kiram's followers are believed to be hiding.

'Subject to discussion'

When asked if the Kiram followers caught in Sabah would be charged in Malaysia or brought back to the Philippines, he said this is "subject to discussion."

"(Philippine President Benigno Aquino III) asked them to surrender and return home and the Philippine government pledged to take action in accordance with its laws," he said.

But he also noted that if Malaysian police arrest the followers, "we can also use our laws."

"When it happens, I and the Philippine Foreign Secretary will discuss to find the best way," he said. — DVM, GMA News

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