Friday, August 28, 2009

Arrests Come As Malaysia, Australia Discuss Curbing Human Trafficking

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 27 (Bernama) -- Even as Malaysia and Australia were working out better cooperation to check the smuggling and trafficking of persons, Malaysian authorities arrested five Afghan men who attempted to use Malaysia as the transit point to sneak into another country.

They were held at a budget hotel in Johor Baharu in a raid at 12.15am on Thursday, said Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan.

The five men, who had been staying at the hotel since Aug 16, were picked up after they failed to produce identification documents, he said, adding that police believed they were trying to enter another country illegally.

Musa spoke to reporters at the conclusion of the two-day Malaysia-Australia Working Group Meeting on the Issue of Smuggling and Trafficking of Humans, here.

He said Malaysia and Australia were prepared to establish an improved bilateral cooperation network as the key measure in curbing the smuggling and trafficking of persons.

He said both countries gave high priority to the efforts and discussed and exchanged ideas on how to forge closer cooperation in terms of intelligence and joint investigations.

They also discussed the possibility of setting up a data base with direct links to Interpol and Aseanapol, he added.

Musa said the meeting also discussed proactive measures to tighten entry points and undertake close monitoring of people who might want to use Malaysia as a transit point.

He also said that a working group would be set up by both sides especially to tackle such crime. -- BERNAMA

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