Malaysia bullish on extremist rehabilitation

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi. Source: Wikimedia

 Malaysia’s success rate in rehabilitating extremists and militants, which Kuala Lumpur claims stands at 95 per cent, raised eyebrows at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2015 in Malta.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said during a presentation on the country’s success in de-radicalising militants, the leaders of the 53 Commonwealth countries were keen to study Malaysia’s example.

Kuala Lumpur is organising a two-day conference on de-radicalisation in January to share the country’s expertise in the area.

Ahmad Zahid, also home minister, said his nation had long and extensive experience in rehabilitating those involved in terrorism, since the Communist “emergency” from 1948 to 1960.

“Malaysia has also long been facing the threats of extremists and terrorists from regional countries such as southern Thailand, southern Philippines and Indonesia,” he said.

He added that the government was confident of achieving a 100-per-cent recovery rate when further actions was taken.

De-radicalisation was discussed along with climate change and migration, he added.

Malaysia’s conference on de-radicalisation would include presentations by the Prisons Department, police, armed forces, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department and Islamic scholars.

Ahmad Zahid is now starting a three-day visit to Italy to discuss security matters.
He is due to hold meetings with the Italian home minister and the police and immigration chiefs as well dine with Malaysian expats.
“The bilateral meetings are expected to discuss … sharing Italy’s vast experience in tackling security issues such as the terrorism threat, migration and curbing secret societies.
“Malaysia wants to learn how Italy has managed to control these issues,” Ahmad Zahid told the press before leaving Malta.
The deputy prime minister is planning to have dinner with Malaysians in Italy and brief them about the state of their homeland.
There are more than 300 Malaysians working or doing business in Italy.

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