New Citizen From China Arrested, On Way To Join Militia To Fight Against ISIS

Four Singapore citizens have been dealt with under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for taking part in violence or intending to undertake violence in armed conflicts overseas, the Ministry of Home Affairs announced on Wednesday (March 16).

Two of the men, Mohammad Razif Yahya, 27, and Amiruddin Sawir, 53, were detained under the ISA in August 2015 for voluntarily fighting in the sectarian conflict in Yemen.

A third, Mohamed Mohideen Mohamed Jais, 25, had also performed armed sentry duties in the wartorn Middle East country and was issued with a Restriction Order, which limits his activities, this month.

In the first case of its kind, Wang Yuandongyi, 23, was also placed on a Restriction Order this month. He had left Singapore and was on his way to Turkey and Syria to join a Kurdish militia group that was fighting against terrorist group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

On the request of the Singapore Government, he was located by the authorities of a third country he had travelled to – which the ministry did not name – and turned back to Singapore.

The ministry said Razif and Amiruddin were detained for having voluntarily taken up arms and taken part in Yemen’s armed sectarian conflict.

Razif had begun studying in a religious institution there in January 2010, and Amiruddin begun his studies there in July 2013.

The two had volunteered for armed sentry duties at the school against possible attacks by Shi’ite Houthi insurgents, who have been fighting the Yemeni government since 2014.

Razif went through sniper training, and was equipped with an AK-47 assault rifle and a Dragunov sniper rifle. Amiruddin was also armed with an AK-47 rifle. Both of them were involved in fighting the rebels.

“Razif and Amiruddin were prepared to kill and be killed as ‘martyrs’ in the sectarian conflict in Yemen,” the ministry said in a statement. “By taking up arms in Yemen, they have demonstrated a readiness to use violence to pursue their religious cause. As such, they are assessed to pose a security threat to Singapore.”

As for Mohideen, he had performed armed sentry duties while pursuing religious studies in Yemen, the ministry added.

While he did not encounter a situation where he had to open fire, he “understood that he had to return fire using the AK-47 assigned to him, with the aim to kill if there was an incursion by the Houthis”.

“The Government takes a stern view against anyone who supports, promotes, undertakes or makes preparations to undertake armed violence, regardless of how they rationalise such violence ideologically, or where the violence takes place,” the ministry said.

Anyone who is aware of a person becoming involved in terrorism-related activities, including planning to travel to conflict zones to take part in an armed conflict, should promptly inform the Internal Security Department on 1800-2626-473 or call the police on 999, it added.




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