Esscom heightens security following kidnap threats in Sabah waters
The Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) has heightened security and mobilised all its assets at sea as well as control posts following threats by the Abu Sayyaf Group of conducting kidnapping activities in the region.
Esscom commander Hazani Ghazali in a statement today urged the community in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) to inform Esscom of any suspicious activities via its hotline at 089-863181 for immediate action.
Yesterday, online portal Marine Link posted a statement from a source in the Philippine Coast Guard, saying that a group of about 10 Abu Sayyaf members armed with pistols, rifles and grenade launchers was planning to conduct kidnapping activities at any opportune time in undisclosed areas in Sabah, primarily targeting businessmen or crew of foreign vessels passing through the area.
They are using unmarked blue and white coloured ‘motor bancas’ (Philippine boats).
Shipmasters and crew are strongly urged to exercise extra vigilance when transiting the waters off Eastern Sabah as well as the seas of Sulu and Celebes.