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  • Writer's pictureBait Al-Amanah

Islamic State (IS) Now In Malaysia, Minister Says Don’t Worry

Updated: Oct 17, 2023

Reposted from The Rakyat Post, featuring Dr Abdul Razak Ahmad, Founding Director of Bait Al Amanah

Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail assured that there is no reason to worry about the presence of groups in Malaysia linked to the Islamic State (IS).

Saifuddin said the authorities were mindful of the endeavour by the Al Malaka Media Center group to expand its influence here.

The Vibes reported the minister as saying that the authorities cannot disclose further details.

However, the public need not worry because the government monitors their activities, working with international security and terrorism prevention partners.

A Highly Organized And Ruthless Terrorist Organisation

Nordic Counter-Terrorism Network (NCTN) director Andrin Raj said the group threatens national security.

It also has the potential to trigger small-scale acts of terrorism indiscriminately in the country.

No Silver-Bullet Solution

Political analyst Dr. Abdul Razak Ahmad said radical religious ideology would continue to be subscribed by certain segments of society.

Dr Abdul Razak, the Founding Director of the independent political think tank Bait Al Amanah, said it’s impossible to eliminate interest in such ideology, but it can never be mainstreamed.

"Malaysia is known to be a very tolerant society and progressive Islam is the state’s core ideology. The IS ideology can never prevail, neither accepted by almost majoritarian Muslim in Malaysia."

- Bait Al Amanah founding director Dr. Abdul Razak to TRP on reining in the IS.

Dr. Abdul Razak, also the Special Representative of the Foreign Minister on Peace Building and Countering Islamophobia and a member of the Consultative Council on Foreign Policy, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, added that international cooperation in countering terrorism is much better now.

He said there is active sharing of resources, intelligence and expertise, and Malaysian authorities are certainly part of this global cooperation network.

At the same time, he noted that IS is a fractured entity and has failed miserably as a state.

"They failed in capturing the imagination of the Muslims that their model of state were feasible. So, it is very hard for them to appeal to the interests of muslim in this part of the world where moderate islam is central in its political, economic and social life."

- Bait Al Amanah founding director Dr. Abdul Razak to TRP on fall of IS.

Driven By A Radical Interpretation Of Islam

The IS is a violent extremist organization that seeks to establish a fundamentalist Islamic state in areas under its control.

There are several reasons why people may fear IS, including:

  1. Terrorism: The IS is known for carrying out brutal acts of terrorism, including bombings, shootings, and beheadings. These attacks are often indiscriminate, targeting civilians and military and government targets.

  2. Human Rights Abuses: The IS has been accused of serious human rights abuses, including genocide, rape, and enslavement. The group has also been responsible for the displacement of millions of people, causing widespread suffering and instability.

  3. Ideology: The IS promotes an extremist ideology incompatible with human rights and democratic values. Its supporters seek to impose their beliefs on others through violence and coercion.

  4. Global Reach: The IS has a global network of supporters and sympathizers, making it a threat beyond the regions where it operates. The group has been responsible for attacks in multiple countries, including the United States and Europe.

Overall, the IS is a dangerous organization that poses a significant threat to global peace and security.

While efforts have been made to combat the group, it remains a potent force in many parts of the world.

At the same time, it is important to note that this group has been largely defeated and weakened in recent years.

IS had been weakened by the military efforts of various nations, including the United States and its allies, and internal conflicts within the group.

Birds Of A Feather

IS and ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) are the same organization.

The group has also been known by other names, including ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant), Daesh, and Al-Qaeda in Iraq.

The group originated as an offshoot of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, but it gained prominence during the Syrian Civil War and expanded its operations into Iraq.

The group declared a caliphate in 2014 and controlled large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria at its height.

While the group has suffered significant losses in recent years, it remains a potent force in some areas and continues to carry out attacks in multiple countries.

They have been known to use women to carry out attacks.

* This article is originally published in The Rakyat Post.

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