Patterns of Global Terrorism 2002 - Malaysia

During 2002, the Malaysian Government continued to cooperate with international law-enforcement and intelligence efforts in the global war on terrorism and aggressively pursued domestic counterterrorism measures within its borders.

Malaysia suffered no incidents of international or domestic terrorism in 2002, although Malaysian police authorities continued their investigations of the regional terrorist organization Jemaah Islamiya (JI) and domestic Kumpulan Mujahidin Malaysia group, resulting in about 40 arrests of individuals suspected of involvement in either group. In late 2001, Malaysian authorities arrested Philippine national Nur Misuari, former Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) leader and ex-governor of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao, for illegal entry and transferred him to the Philippines in January 2002. On 19 November 2001, Misuari had declared war on the Arroyo government, and armed MNLF guerrillas loyal to him attacked an army headquarters in Jolo, Sulu, that left over 100 persons dead and scores wounded. At year's end, Misuari's trial on rebellion charges was ongoing.

Kuala Lumpur sought to freeze assets of entities on the UNSCR 1267 Sanctions Committee's consolidated list, although it has not located terrorist assets to date. Kuala Lumpur requires financial institutions to file suspicious transaction reports on all names of individuals and entities designated under US Executive Order 13224, but it was not yet a party to the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. Malaysia is a party to three of the 12 international conventions and protocols relating to terrorism.

The Malaysian Government passed legislation in 2002 that will allow the negotiation of mutual legal-assistance treaties with other countries. In addition, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Indonesia signed a counterterrorism agreement on 7 May – later joined by Thailand and Cambodia – that establishes a framework for cooperation and interoperability of the three nations' procedures for handling border and security incidents. Twenty specific projects are detailed in the agreement, to include such measures as setting up hotlines, sharing airline passenger lists, and conducting joint training.

In May, Malaysia signed a joint counterterrorism declaration of cooperation with the United States, and in November the Malaysian cabinet approved establishment of a Malaysian-based regional counterterrorism training center in Kuala Lumpur.

Malaysia joined several ASEAN members in October 2002 in successfully requesting that the UNSCR 1267 Sanctions Committee include JI on its consolidated list of individuals and entities associated with Usama Bin Ladin, the members of al-Qaida, and the members of the Taliban.

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