Sulu sultanate seeks UN, media presence in Sabah
Perseus Echeminada (The Philippine Star) - August 13, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The sultanate of Sulu challenged Malaysian officials yesterday to allow independent international media and United Nations observers in Lahad Datu, Sabah to prove that there are no ongoing military operations in the area.

Abraham Idjirani, spokesman for the Sulu sultanate, said Eastern Sabah Security Command director Gen. Datuk Mohammad Mentek denied that eight Malaysian soldiers were killed during a recent encounter with members of the so-called Royal Sultanate Army of Sulu.

Idjirani said Mentek made the denial after a report was published by the New Straits Times and other Malaysian newspapers that branded the new clashes as “mere propaganda.”

The Sulu sultanate would provide the media with proof such as photographs in case the Malaysian forces resume their military operations, said Idjirani.

He said Malaysian special forces are conducting discreet military operations against the 1,600 members of the Sulu sultanate’s forces that have set up their stronghold in a 3,000-hectare rubber plantation, which is part of their ancestral land.

“The Malaysians do not want the presence of UN observers and independent international media to hide the actual situation in Lahad Datu,” he said.

Idjirani said Malaysia wants to hide the actual situation in Lahad Datu from the UN and other countries who were witness or signatories to treaties which recognized the Sulu sultanate as the real owner of Sabah.

The Sulu sultanate has accused Malaysia of committing the greatest land grab in modern history by exploiting the ancestral land of the sultan of Sulu.

 

ABRAHAM IDJIRANI DATUK MOHAMMAD MENTEK EASTERN SABAH SECURITY COMMAND IDJIRANI LAHAD DATU NEW STRAITS TIMES ROYAL SULTANATE ARMY OF SULU SABAH SULTANATE SULU UNITED NATIONS
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