Malaysia PM says Filipino incursion a 'wake-up call'
AFPKUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Malaysia's premier has called a deadly incursion by Philippine militants a “wake-up call” that will lead to tighter security on the neighbors' notoriously porous sea border, a report said Wednesday.
March 14, 2013, 12:00 am TWN
But Prime Minister Najib Razak added that securing the border was a “huge challenge” due to eastern Sabah state's long coastline and the centuries-old movement of people between there and the adjacent southern Philippines.
“This is a wake-up call. There are gaps in terms of our capabilities, but we hope we will be able to close the gaps,” Najib said in an interview published in the New Straits Times newspaper.
“For example, the coastline of Sabah is simply enormous,” he was quoted as saying.
The issue burst into the regional spotlight last month when armed followers of a self-styled Philippine sultan landed in Sabah to claim the territory for their leader, tearing open a long-dormant dispute over ownership of the state at the northern tip of Borneo island.