Navy ship goes to Malaysia trying to get Filipinos

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In this photo taken on Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013, a policeman closes a gate of their base at a village of Sahabat 16, near Lahad Datu, Sabab, Malaysia. AP FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – A Philippine navy ship was sailing to waters off eastern Malaysia on Monday to try to bring back some members of a Filipino clan who became locked in a territorial standoff after going there and claiming land as their own.

About 180 Filipinos, including about 30 armed security guards, arrived in Sabah state’s coastal district of Lahad Datu about two weeks ago, claiming Sabah belongs to their royal clan based in the southern Philippine province of Sulu.

Malaysian authorities regard them as armed intruders and have attempted to persuade them to leave peacefully, extending a deadline until Tuesday.

Philippine and Malaysian authorities have said the group’s demands should be addressed through diplomatic channels.

The Philippines notified Malaysia about the ship arrangements Saturday and said the vessel will stay off Lahad Datu while talks to persuade the Filipinos to return home continue. It departed Sunday night with an entourage including social workers and medical personnel and was due to arrive around midday Monday.

Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said the navy ship was on a humanitarian mission to try to pick up five women and some of the other group members. “We urge them to board the ship without delay and return home,” he said.

Del Rosario also repeated a plea for the entire group to return home to their families in the southern Philippines while “we are addressing the core issues they have raised.”

“Please do so for your own safety,” he said.

Malaysian police have not said what kind of weapons the Filpinos possess. Details from the remote area, about 500 kilometers (300 miles) from Sabah’s capital city, have been scarce.

Security along Malaysia’s sea border with the Philippines has been problematic for Sabah, where tens of thousands of impoverished Filipinos have tried to migrate over the past few decades.

In 2000, Muslim extremists from the southern Philippines slipped twice into Sabah and abducted people for ransom, including European tourists and Malaysian workers from a diving resort.

One of the most recent kidnappings involved two Malaysians snatched from a plantation in Lahad Datu in November. They were believed to have been taken to the southern Philippines.

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Psiitoon-Charoenkrung/100001362990665 Psiitoon Charoenkrung

    Instead of ordering the Sultan to leave Sabah, the navy ship should bring food and medicines to the holed up filipinos.  Its useless to persuade them because they are ready to die for their homeland.  

    • sanjuan683

       hehehehehe Yun DFA natin kampi sa kalaban.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/74YM4AKT6YHVIO2VVW6VDNZJTA Jhon

    Wala ng ibang ka abnormalan sa mga tagaliglig. hehehe. Kaya pala ang bansa natin wala talagang asinso. super bukig itong tagaliglig.

  • KonsensyaNgBayan

    Why should the land owners be persuaded by Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario to go home?. Why they don’t persuade the lesse to leave the land for which they owned!!…Why does our Government always protect the foreign invaders and not our common brother Filipino’s?. Why do we give more respect to these foreigners rather than our own brothers?….Gising na Bayan ko, Luzon, Visayas, at Mindanao…iisang bansa, iisang lahi…tayong lahat ay iisa lang sa mga mata ng mga banyaga…ikaw, ako, tayong lahat ay Pilipino!!!

    • tagatabas

       Alam mo ba ng sinasabi mo? Aral ka muna ng kaunti bago ka pumutak.

  • http://joboni96.myopenid.com/ joboni96

    let us support the sultanate of sulu
    benefit from their lands in borneo

    stolen by the british

    1. malaysia to increase to $10 million per year rent
    to be used on both sides of the border

    2. bangsa moro to support the sultanate in sabah issue

    3. sovereignty issue to be set aside in the meantime
    in exchange for the commercial transaction in no. 1

    4. philippine government gives the sultanate
    the power to negotiate but
    concurrence power is reserved

    5. money in no.1 will be used for development of
    sultanate on both countries, and bangsa moro
    led and managed by the sultanate

    6. brunei as mediator

    7. dont let hegemonist intsik switik and
    u.s. imperialist take advantage of this

    • tagatabas

      Punta ka sa malacanang sabihin mo ikaw ang tatayong abogado ng mga tausog.

      • http://joboni96.myopenid.com/ joboni96

        bakeet

  • Albert Einstien

    MALI ata TITLE..gusto ng TAO…”   Navy ship goes to Malaysia trying to BRING MORE Filipinos ”  ..bonnga di ba..PROBLEMA si pnoy mismo ay MALASia spokesperson….USELESS na PABIGAT pa…ay buhay hayahay……lol

  • billy gunner

    WTF is our govt doing again??? parang ibebenta yata ng gobyerno ang buhay at dignidad ng mga pilipinong nasa sabah para ipaglaban ang kanilang karapatan!

    • tagatabas

       Parang may alamn ka kung magsalita, tumahimik ka na lang muna wag putak ng putak.

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