While terrorism is a worldwide problem, one of the most urgent ways it threatens South-east Asia is in the Sulu Sea, where militants have kidnapped sailors and illicit arms are known to flow through.
Singapore, therefore, welcomes the proposed joint patrols between Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines in the water body in south- western Philippines, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said yesterday, on the last day of the annual Shangri-La Dialogue, organised by the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
… “The capacity of the Philippine military to patrol the southern reaches is, to be frank, inadequate, and hence joint patrols make operational sense,” said Associate Professor Kumar Ramakrishna, head of policy studies at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.
He added that such patrols can help weaken Abu Sayyaf, if part of a “more comprehensive political and socioeconomic package” for nearby Mindanao, a troubled region where many militant groups are based.
Last updated on 06/06/2016