KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has deported six Egyptians and a Tunisian suspected of being linked to Islamist militant groups abroad.
Malaysia Inspector-General of Police Mohamad Fuzi Harun said in a statement on Sunday, the suspects include five people have allegedly admitted to being part of Egypt’s banned Muslim Brotherhood.
The Tunisian and one of the Egyptians deported were members of Ansar al-Sharia al-Tunisia, which is listed as a terrorist group by the United Nations, Mohamad Fuzi added.
“Members of this terror group are suspected of being involved in plans to carry out large-scale attacks in other countries,” Mohamad Fuzi said.
He also added that Two of the suspects, both in their early 20s, allegedly used fake passports to enter Malaysia with the intention of traveling to and launching an attack in a third country.
The other five Egyptians confessed to being members of the Muslim Brotherhood, and are accused of providing shelter, transport and employment for the two linked to Ansar al-Sharia.
Meanwhile, Malaysia got denounced for having deported these suspects who may face torture by the Egyptian government.
Human rights groups say that members of the deported group would face possible torture and persecution in Egypt, which brands them as terrorists.Amnesty International Malaysia said that the Egyptians deported were now at risk of enforced disappearance, torture, prolonged detention and unfair trials, Reuters reported.
“We urge the Malaysian government to respect the principle of non-refoulement and ensure that those at risk of persecution or risk of irreparable harm in another country, including torture, are not deported,” the group’s executive director Shamini Darshni Kaliemuthu was quoted as saying before the deportation took place.
Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) also condemned the deportation today.
In a statement, LFL executive director Latheefa Koya said that if the men were found to have committed the offence locally, they should be tried under Malaysia laws and not deported back to their country.
“The IGP claims that they aided foreign terrorist elements in the country, and are thus suspected to have committed Offences under Part VIA of the Penal Code.
“If the Egyptians are believed to have committed such serious offences on Malaysian soil, why were they not charged formally in the Malaysian court? She questioned.
However, the police insists that Malaysia should not be a home or a shelter for such migrants.
“As the presence of these foreigners constitute a security risk, all suspects have been deported to their native country and… recommendations have been made to blacklist them from entering Malaysia for life,” Mohamad Fuzi said.