Malaysia foiled a plot by the so-called Islamic State to kidnap government leaders including the country’s Prime Minister, it has been revealed. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the country’s Deputy Prime Minister, said jihadists attempted to kidnap him and two other Malaysian officials – including the Prime Minister Najib Razak and the defence minister, Hishammuddin Hussein.
He added that Malaysia’s anti-terrorism unit, who stopped the plot, also managed to prevent attempts to create chaos in Kedah, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya. “On Jan. 30, 2015, a total of 13 people with ties to Daesh [Isis] had planned to kidnap the leaders, including the prime minister, home minister and defence minister,” Mr Hamidi said.
According to the Straits Times, he added that police had foiled four attacks planned by Isis in Malaysia. In one incident, in September 2014, there was a plan by the group to test improvised explosive devices in the northwest state of Kedah. “They also wanted to destroy the Free Mason Lodge in Bukit Jalil”. He added: “Although there is no proper Daesh (Isis) establishment in the country, those who were here were being influenced and have been receiving orders from the network in Syria. “We detected plans to attack several locations in Kedah, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya, attempt to rob of firearms from army camps, making of explosions, robbing cash-in-transit vans as well as plot to kidnap the country’s leaders for ransom.
Last week the Prime Minister of Malysia vowed to fight extremism and terrorism in southeast Asia where officials said Isis have been working to co-opt local terror groups.