The Philippine Star quoted Kiram clan spokesman Abraham Idjirani as saying that clashes will resume soon after some 1,000 Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters allegedly land in Sabah to reinforce the sultanate’s forces in Lahad Datu.
“At the moment, the Malaysians are very busy with their upcoming election and do not want to disturb Sabah where there are more than 600,000 Bangsa Suluk residents and voters,” he was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
Idjirani said the Bangsa Suluks in Sabah have kept strong ties with the people of Sulu.
“Prime Minister Najib (Razak) is afraid of offending them,” he said. “It might cost him votes.”
Idjirani added the Sulu commander in Lahad Datu, Agbimuddin Kiram, confirmed the arrival of the fully-armed MNLF fighters who have brought anti-tank weapons but said they have yet to link up.
Agbimuddin’s men remain mobile and continue to evade Malaysian security forces, he added.
“They have taken positions away from Kampung Tanduo and Tanjung Batu,” Idjirani said.
Hajib Mujaha Hashim, MNLF Islamic Command Council chairman, said the MNLF fighters are seasoned guerrillas.
“They are experienced in guerilla warfare,” he was quoted as saying in the report.
“They are there not officially as MNLF, but we could not prevent MNLF forces from going there and reinforcing the royal army of the sultanate of Sulu in the area.”
A Tausug leader in Sulu said almost daily, Tausug fighters have been landing in batches in Sabah from Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and Basilan.
“I don’t have the exact figure, but Tausug fighters have made it through Sabah and have already linked up” with the sultanate’s forces, he said.
~ The Malaysian Insider