TheJakartaPost

Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Indonesians told to avoid Sabah waters after recent kidnappings

  • Kharishar Kahfi
    Kharishar Kahfi

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, January 21, 2020   /   07:41 pm
Indonesians told to avoid Sabah waters after recent kidnappings Sabah shut its eastern international border to crossborder trade after four sailors were kidnapped from the MV Masfive 6 (pictured) by Filipino gunmen in 2016. The Foreign Ministry has urged Indonesian fishermen and ship crew members to avoid waters off the coast of Sabah state in the Malaysian part of Borneo, following the recent abduction of five fishermen by members of the Abu Sayyaf militant group. (The Star/ANN/-)

The Foreign Ministry is urging Indonesian fishermen and ship crew members to avoid waters off the coast of Sabah state in the Malaysian part of Borneo, following the recent abduction of five fishermen by members of the Abu Sayyaf militant group.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the ministry said Indonesian representatives in Kota Kinabalu and Tawau were urging Indonesian ship crew members not go to sea because of “unguaranteed security conditions in the waters off Sabah”.

The ministry also advised those looking for employment as migrant workers to follow procedure to travel to their destination countries and not go as crew members of ships that operate in waters off Sabah.

Members of a faction of the notorious Abu Sayyaf group abducted on Thursday five Indonesian fishermen from a trawler in Sabah’s easternmost waters off Lahad Datu, located about 10 minutes from the Tawi-Tawi chain of islands in the southern Philippines.

Read also: Indonesia calls out Malaysia for ‘ineffective’ security following fresh kidnappings

The hostages were part of an eight-man crew aboard a Sabah-registered fishing vessel, before armed gunmen took them to the southern Philippines.

Indonesian Deputy Foreign Minister Mahendra Siregar said Monday that the government would take the necessary steps to handle the latest kidnappings to ensure the safety of the hostages. He also expressed disappointment at the inability of Malaysian authorities to secure their borders.

The Abu Sayyaf group, a loose association of militants who kidnap for ransom and operate out of the southern islands of the Philippines, began targeting Indonesian sailors in 2016. Thirty-nine people had been abducted before Thursday’s incident. The government has denied claims that it paid ransom for their release.