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M’sia makes case against Hambali being released

 | August 22, 2016

Home Minister says former militant leader still poses a national security threat as his release could revive the feared Jemaah Islamiyah terrorist movement.

PETALING JAYA: Former Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) militant leader Hambali is still a national security threat and should not be released from Guantanamo Bay by the Prison’s Periodic Review Board.

In a report in the News Straits Times, Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed was quoted as saying that it was highly likely that Hambali, whose real name is Riduan Isamuddin, still wielded strong influence over the remaining members of JI in the country and his release could spur a revival of the feared movement.

“The militant JI group may still have followers and they may be waiting for Hambali’s release to revive the movement, although it was mopped out some 10 years ago.

“This is a matter of national security and great priority should be given to this. These factors should outweigh the release of a jailed man who is capable of training anyone into a radical soldier,” said Nur Jazlan after a working visit to the Home Ministry Complex in Taman Setia Tropika, today.

Nur Jazlan said that although Hambali was an Indonesian, the militant had stayed in Malaysia for many years and had been successful in recruiting new members into the JI.

Hambali is currently among 61 other “high value” detainees and terrorists in the US facility of Guantanamo in Cuba, where he has spent the last 13 years.

Fears of his release surfaced when US President Barack Obama pledged to shut Guantanamo Bay when he was sworn into office.

Obama’s office also set up the Periodic Review Board to hear the cases of selected detainees who could face possible release.

Hambali was responsible for the 2002 Bali bombing that killed 202 people as well as the bombing of churches in Indonesia on Christmas Eve in 2000.

He was initially held in a secret US overseas prison for three years before ending up in Guantanamo Bay on Sept 4, 2006.


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