09 Nov 2017

Update on Terrorism-Related Arrests Under The Internal Security Act (ISA)

​​​1.     Between Sep and Nov 2017, three Singaporeans were dealt with under the Internal Security Act (ISA). 

 

 

Abu Thalha bin Samad

 

2.     Abu Thalha bin Samad (Abu Thalha), aged 25, is a member of the terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah (JI).  Since young, Abu Thalha has received his education in JI-linked schools in the region, where he imbibed JI's radical teachings.  He also underwent paramilitary training in some of the schools he attended.  In 2014, he took bai'ah (pledge of allegiance) and became a JI member.  He understood it to mean that he was duty-bound to carry out whatever instructions the JI leaders had for him, including performing armed jihad and sacrificing his life for the JI's violent cause.  Since 2016, he has been teaching in a JI-linked school and had also served on a JI committee which talent-spotted students for membership in the JI. 

 

3.     In Aug 2017, we worked together with a regional government to deport him to Singapore where he was arrested under the ISA for his involvement in a terrorist organisation. He was issued with an Order of Detention (OD) for a period of two years in Sep 2017.

 

 

Adzrul Azizi bin Bajuri

                  

4.     Adzrul Azizi bin Bajuri (Adzrul), aged 19, is a former full-time National Serviceman who served as a Logistics Assistant in the SAF. He is radicalised and is a supporter of the terrorist group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). 

 

5.     Adzrul became radicalised through exposure to pro-ISIS online radical material. In 2014, while watching online videos related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, he came across ISIS-related videos. Through continued exposure to these pro-ISIS materials, he became radicalised by ISIS's propaganda. In mid-2016, Adzrul considered fighting for ISIS in Syria, as he saw the armed conflict there as a sectarian struggle between Sunnis and Shias. From Aug 2017 onwards, he started having some doubts about the legitimacy of ISIS's ideology and its violent tactics.  He was issued with a Restriction Order (RO)[1] in Sep 2017 and will be required to undergo counselling, including religious counselling.

 

 

Munavar Baig Amina Begam

 

6.     Munavar Baig Amina Begam (Amina), aged 38, is a housewife and a naturalised Singapore Citizen originally from India. She is an ISIS supporter and harboured the intention to make her way to the conflict zone to join ISIS. 

 

7.     Amina was radicalised by a foreign online contact, who shared with her pro-ISIS materials, and convinced her that ISIS was fighting to defend Sunnis in the conflict zone. She was radicalised to the extent that she was prepared to undergo military training and take up arms to fight for ISIS in the Middle-East if called upon by ISIS to do so.

 

8.     To influence others to support ISIS, Amina shared materials promoting terrorism on social media, which inter alia, encouraged others to fight and die as martyrs. Amina was issued with an OD for a period of two years in Nov 2017.

 

 

Lapse of Restriction Order

 

9.     The RO issued against Mustafa Kamal bin Mohammad (Mustafa; aged 62) was allowed to lapse in Sep 2017. Mustafa, who was placed on RO in Sep 2013, was a member of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). While on RO, he was cooperative and responsive to rehabilitation efforts. As such, he no longer requires supervision under the RO regime.



 


 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION IN RESPONSE TO MEDIA QUERIES REGARDING MHA'S PRESS RELEASE ON 9 NOVEMBER 2017

 

10.     None of the three individuals were reported by relatives or friends. Investigations have not established them to have any plans to carry out attacks in Singapore.

 

Abu Thalha bin Samad

 

11.     Abu Thalha lived overseas for 15 years prior to his deportation to Singapore in August 2017. He had been overseas since he was a young boy and attended several schools while abroad. Information on his Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) involvement surfaced in mid-2017.  He has family both in Singapore and abroad.

 

12.     The JI threat in Singapore was largely neutralised following the various security actions against the JI presence in the region in the early 2000s.  Nonetheless, the JI continues to be active in the region. The last arrest of a JI member was Masyhadi bin Mas Selamat (Masyhadi).  He was detained on 21 Nov 2013 for his involvement in JI.

 

Adzrul Azizi bin Bajuri

 

13.     Adzrul was serving National Service when he was arrested. The authorities received intelligence on Adzrul in August 2017.  He was studying in a local secondary school when he was exposed to ISIS-related content. Although some of his relatives and associates had seen indications of his radicalism, they did not inform the authorities.

 

14.     Adzrul's radicalisation was left unchecked because no one came forward to report him.  Fortunately, he was detected before he could engage in armed violence overseas.  However, it would not always be the case that a radicalised individual can be detected before he/she engages in terrorist conduct or worse, carry out a terrorist attack in Singapore or elsewhere. His case and others this year show how challenging it is for the authorities to detect individuals who are self-radicalised.  It is therefore critical that if people are aware that someone they know is radicalised, they should quickly report to the authorities, before the individual gets involved in terrorist conduct.  The earlier the intervention, the better the chance of steering the person away from going down the path of radicalism.

 

15.     One of the individuals to whom Adzrul had mentioned his pro-ISIS inclinations tried to counsel Adzrul against having such beliefs. The authorities have investigated and there are no indications that Adzrul radicalised any of his fellow national servicemen.

 

Munavar Baig Amina Begam

 

16.     Amina's husband and her two children are Singapore Citizens by birth. He was unaware of her radicalism and was not implicated in her terrorism-related activities.   Amina was radicalised by a foreign online contact to the extent that she was prepared to make her way to the conflict zone to join ISIS.


 


 


 

[1]           A person issued with a Restriction Order (RO) must abide by several conditions and restrictions. For example, he is not permitted to change his residence or employment, or travel out of Singapore, without the prior approval of the Director ISD. The individual issued with RO also cannot issue public statements, address public meetings or print, distribute, contribute to any publication, hold office in, or be a member of any organisation, association or group without the prior approval of Director ISD.  ​

Last Updated on 10 Nov 2017
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