Crown price will fight till death in Sabah
The latest news update from the Manila
'Persons of interest' in Sabah conflict are being
MANILA - President Aquino on Monday said there are definite signs of a
conspiracy in the move of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III and his followers to
use force to press their claim over Sabah, Malaysia.
In a statement, Aquino told Kiram III, one of the claimants to the title of
sultan of Sulu, that it is unreasonable to ask for understanding "when you
have a gun pointed at my head."
He noted that aside from the lives of Kiram's men,
the Philippine government is also concerned about the 800,000 Filipinos in
Sabah whose lives could be jeopardized by the Kiram group's action.
The President said he is not blind to signs that
point to a conspiracy in the ongoing tension.
"Mulat tayo na may mga taong nagkutsabahan
upang humantong tayo sa sitwasyong ito, isang sitwasyon na walang agarang
solusyon. Ilan po sa kanila ay nakikita natin habang ang iba naman ay
nagkukubli naman sa dilim," he said.
"Sa mga taong nasa likod nito, ngayon pa lang
sinasabi ko sa inyo, hindi kayo magtatagumpay. Pananagutin natin ang nagkasala
sa bansa," he added.
He later told reporters that he had received
intelligence reports and authorities are monitoring "persons of
interest" on the Sabah issue.
Aquino said all the individuals pushing for the
Kiram claim were mouthing the same lines over and over again. He also noted the
Kirams would have had to spend at least P100,000 to hire a large boat to bring
their forces to Lahad Datu in Sabah, Malaysia.
Aquino said the Kiram family used 2 large boats and
a speedboat to bring their men to Sabah.
He indicated that the Kirams could not have
financed the operation, noting that Kiram III is receiving financial support
from the government through the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO)
for his regular dialysis.
"Funds and the food, the money that was left
behind, yung mga concerted, seemingly concerted criticisms all point to a
conspiracy," he said.
Asked about the meeting between former President
Gloria Arroyo's National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales and Jamalul Kiram,
the President said he does not accuse without the proper evidence.
"Hintayin na lang po natin ang resulta ng
imbestigasyon," he said.
Aquino said he spoke with Malaysian Prime Minister
Najib Razak who said negotiations with the Kiram group were no longer possible
after the deaths of Malaysian police commandos last week. -- ANC, March 4, 2013
Intruders emerge in yet another village
Posted on 4 March 2013 - 07:04pm
Last updated on 4 March 2013 - 07:09pm
Last updated on 4 March 2013 - 07:09pm
LAHAD DATU (March 4, 2013): Sulu gunmen were believed to have struck another village in Tanjung Labian about 80 kilometres from here today.
It is learnt that a police team was sent to Kampung Tanjung Batu at noon for a reconnaissance operation following intelligence reports of suspected intruders in military fatigues at the place.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar said at a press conference at 4pm that police are inspecting the place and are yet to deliver a report on their findings.
"We are receiving a number of information of such movements and we are verifying it, it takes time to verify these claims." he said.
Police are being kept on their toes over any unwarned emergence of Sulu intruders at villages along the east coast such as what occurred on Saturday night at Kampung Sri Jaya Simunul where six policemen were killed.
Ismail said a manhunt was ongoing for the remaining gunmen who ambushed the team. Six intruders were shot dead by the police team in the incident.
Sources said security forces are concerned of the possibility of intruders evading detection by mingling with locals in villages before executing plans to hijack the place.
Earlier, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishamuddin Hussein and Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi arrived Lahad Datu before visiting Felda Sahabat 16 for a briefing on the standoff at Kampung Tanduo.
"They both asked me if the morale of my men was affected following the death of the eight police personnel in the clashes. I told them that my boys are still in high spirits and they are prepared to face the intruders. We did lose men but the casualties of the enemy was higher. We killed 19 intruders. We have been facing challenges over the past three days but with the help of the army, we have taken control of the situation and our morale is high." he said.
Armed Forces chief Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin said the two fresh army battalions that arrived late on Sunday will be stationed at various locations including Labuan, Sandakan and Tawau.
"The soldiers are being stationed there to overcome any fears of the public may have as there are rumours that these places are unsafe." he said.
A restaurant owner in Lahad Datu town who declined to be named said many of her relatives and friends were gripped with fear over the recent clashes and have temporarily left home for Sarawak.
"Of course we are fearful even though the police keep saying the state is safe. Since Friday there have been clashes and sightings of the intruders. As long as they remain uncaught, it is difficult to rest in peace. I have dozens of friends and relatives who have left the state as a precaution and plan to only return after this standoff ends," she said.
Meanwhile, it is learnt that villagers of Kampung Tanjung Batu at Tanjung Labian have been ejected from their homes by at least two dozen intruders said to have sneaked in from Kampung Tanduo for food and other supplies.
Fear-stricken and homeless, the villagers were spotted loitering aimlessly at the outskirts of the village. – theSun