Sabah's sea curfew extended until March 11 | Global News

Sabah’s sea curfew extended until March 11

/ 05:08 PM February 23, 2022


A boat of General Operations Forces team patrolling at a resort area in Semporna in the east coast of Sabah. Photo from The Star/ Asia News Network

KOTA KINABALU — Sabah’s dusk-to-dawn sea curfew has been extended for another two weeks until March 11.

The curfew covers areas up to three nautical miles (5.55km) off Tawau, Semporna, Kunak, Lahad Datu, Kinabatangan, Sandakan and Beluran.


Sabah Commissioner of Police Commissioner Datuk Idris Abdullah said those living in the areas involved were not allowed to leave their homes during curfew hours, while outsiders were not allowed to enter.


He said the extension of the 6pm to 6am sea curfew was needed due to continuous threats from cross-border criminals, including from kidnap-for-ransom groups.

“There is a need to continue the curfew in these waters to prevent the encroachment of terrorists and criminals who can threaten the safety of locals, international researchers and tourists on islands,” said in a on Wednesday (Feb 23).

Comm Idris added that according to intelligence sources, kidnap-for-ransom groups and Abu Sayyaf militants were still trying to attack and commit cross-border crimes.

“The curfew allows authorities to ensure the safety of the people of Sabah who use the waters and are staying near the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone).

“It is also to facilitate enforcement and monitoring of marine activities in the area as well as establish a sense of safety among nearby chalet owners and fishermen through the presence of security forces,” he said.

Comm Idris said he had authorised all district police chiefs to issue permits to eligible applicants who fit the criteria to conduct fishery activities in the areas affected by the curfew.


The curfew was first implemented on July 19, 2014 following a spate of kidnappings which resulted in the beheading of Sarawakian Bernard Then Ted Fen and the deaths of several others, including a policeman and tourists.


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