Malaysian police arrest 14 over ISIS

2014-10-16 10:32

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Kuala Lumpur - Malaysian police said 14 people arrested this week for suspected links to the Islamic State group included a government engineer and two others who used Facebook to recruit fighters for the extremist group in Syria.

"Three of them are key players of a cell whose role was to recruit, finance and arrange trips for Malaysians to join terror groups in Syria," national police chief Khalid Abu Bakar said in a statement.

Those arrested ranged in age from 14 to 48 and include two women, the statement said.

Khalid had been quoted by Malaysian media earlier saying the arrests had been made in a Kuala Lumpur suburb.

Authorities in the Muslim-majority country - as well as some of its Southeast Asian neighbours - have expressed mounting alarm over the extremist group's efforts to lure recruits from Malaysia, which has historically practiced moderate Islam.

Police have arrested a total of three dozen people this year for suspected IS-related activities, and say that at least 40 Malaysians have left for Syria.

Malaysia's authoritarian government has long kept a lid on Islamic extremists, but conservative views have gained increasing traction in recent years as the regime's controls have loosened.

Read more on:    isis  |  malaysia

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