Asian Nations Step Up Cooperation As IS Threat Mounts
Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines are committed to strengthening their cooperation on defence to stem the movement of militants and combat piracy across their porous borders.
The Indonesian minister said this on the sidelines of a security forum in Singapore.
Ryamizard Ryacudu said the current terrorist threat in Southeast Asia – home to the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation and over half a billion people – is “unprecedented”, as he pledged to share intelligence information with other nations in the annual Shangri-La Dialogue.
Dozens of fighters from Indonesia and Malaysia are believed to have made their way into Mindanao in the southern Philippines, where Islamic State-linked militants have mounted a prolonged siege against security forces, in an attempt to establish a caliphate.
The three nations also plan to launch joint air patrols at their shared boundaries in the Sulu Sea in addition to existing maritime patrols, but concrete plans will decide after another meeting in mid-June.