The Home Ministry raised the alarm bell on the threat of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), saying that the radical Islamist group, is plotting to kidnap wealthy Malaysians and stage bank robberies in the country, major Chinese dailies reported .
Its Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, in a joint interview recently, said the tactics employed by Isis is to hold these tycoons for ransom and use the money to funds their terrorist activities, Sin Chew Daily reported.
Other Chinese dailies involved in the special interview with Zahid included China Press, Nanyang Siang Pau, Oriental Daily and Guang Ming Daily.
Sin Chew Daily also reported that so far, authorities have yet to determine who is on the so called list of Isis’ targets but are working hard trying to determine the matter.
He said, based on intelligence reports, such plots are already developing and the ministry is trying to track down and investigate suspicious movements by the group and their sympathisers in the country.
“Anyone who is a rich is considered a potential target for Isis, and in Malaysia, most of them are not Malays,” he was quoted as to saying.
“As of now, we can only affirm that they have already laid eyes on some of these people; We do not know who but we will do our best in protecting these potential victims,” he added.
The Chinese daily said Zahid also advised these potential targets to beef up security.
“Do not let your guard down, be alert regardless whether you are a tycoon or not, you can be easily kidnapped if you are not cautious.”
During the interview, Sin Chew Daily said Zahid also emphasised on the need to implement pre-emptive measures to face possible Isis threats in the country.
He urged Malaysians to support the upcoming anti-terrorism laws, citing the Prevention of Terrorism Act, saying that it is “extremely critical.”
The Chinese daily reported that according to Zahid, the Caliphate system that Isis propagates does not agree with the existing democratic system.
“Everyone will be brainwashed under the ideology and those who do not buy into their idea will be alienated and killed, especially those who oppose the ideology.
“Isis threats is real in this country. It is also possible that they will kill Malaysians within the borders of this nation,” he stressed.
“Their targets will also comprise of non-Muslims and various factions of Islam who they consider them heretic.”
To date, about 59 Malaysians are officially known to have joined Isis.
More than 65 have been arrested by police either on their way to Syria and Iraq or on their way back since the start of last year. – Malaysian Insider