Press Releases

Additional Comments on the Detention & Releases under the Internal Security Act

Published: 30 July 2016

Zulfikar bin Mohamad Shariff

1. Zulfikar bin Mohamad Shariff was arrested on 1 July 2016 when he returned to Singapore for a visit. He had made several return trips to Singapore between 2002 and 2014.


2. He is still a Singaporean and recently revealed to the Singapore authorities that he had also taken up Australian citizenship. Three of his children are also holding dual Singaporean and Australian citizenship. His wife and his other children are not Singapore citizens. Zulfikar and his family have been receiving state grants and unemployment benefits from the Australian government. 


3. The photo provided in the Press Release was dated 2014 and showed Zulfikar's children.


4. Other "influencers" like Zulfikar have been detained before. One example is Haji Ibrahim B Haji Maidin, the Singapore Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) spiritual leader who is currently detained. He played a major role in Indoctrinating JI members with JI's violent ideology. In 2007, self-radicalised individual Muhammad Zamri bin Abdullah (Zamri) was detained for, among other things, influencing two other Singaporeans with his pro-armed jihad ideology; the two were also dealt with under the ISA.  


17-Year-Old Singaporean Issued with Restriction Order

5. The 17-year-old Singaporean learnt about ISIS through mainstream media reports and formed a positive view of ISIS. After attending a talk on terrorism by RSIS, he disagreed with the speaker's negative assessment of ISIS, and went online to look for more information that would confirm his own biases.  In the course of doing so, he fell deeper into radicalism.  Such talks are no more 'risky' than mainstream media reports that carry similar information about terrorism.


Abdul Basheer S/O Abdul Kader


6. The process of assessing whether a detainee is suitable for release from detention is a thorough and stringent one.  It factors in the detainee's progress in his rehabilitation programme, the assessments of the psychologists, the ISD case officers, Detention Centre wardens and religious counsellors from the Religious Rehabilitation Group.  The decision to release a detainee is premised on ISD's assessment of whether he poses an imminent threat to Singapore's that point in time.  Those who no longer pose an imminent threat will be released. 


7. But there is no guarantee that they will not later relapse and revert to terrorism-related activities.  The possibility of a former detainee reverting to his past militant beliefs, despite the best efforts at rehabilitation and aftercare, is the reason why former detainees are placed under a tight monitoring and supervision regime after their release from detention. If they relapse, they would then have to be investigated again.


Muhammad Shamin bin Mohamed Sidik


8. Muhammad Shamin bin Mohamed Sidik is still in detention.


Persons in Detention Or Under Restriction Orders


9. There are presently 20 persons in detention, 1 on Suspension Direction and 22 on Restriction Orders for terrorism-related activities.


Law and order
Managing Security Threats