Malaysian Army takes on the Lahad Datu Invaders

UPDATED @ 11:27:16 AM 05-03-2013

March 5, 2013

Malaysian Army takes on the Lahad Datu Invaders

Update Lahad Datu Standoff

The Army launched an attack on the Filipino intruders at Kampung Tanduo, Felda Sahabat in Lahad Datu at 7am today, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said in a statement today. The Star Online reported that fresh fighting began between the Sulu gunmen and security forces early this morning. Soldiers are already on the ground in the village, it added.

Gunshots were heard and fighter jets were seen circling around the Felda Sahabat plantation. Explosions were heard for 40 minutes in Kampung Tanduo, the daily reported.

Armed Forces personnel prepare to board a flight for Sabah, in Sepang on March 3, 2013. — Picture taken from @tonyfernandes.

The group of 200 armed men, claiming to be the Royal Sulu Sultanate Army, had landed on February 9 to revive their Sultan’s claim for the Borneo state.

Armed Forces Chief Gen Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin said yesterday seven more battalions have been sent to Sabah since Saturday, with five in Lahad Datu and one each based in Sandakan and Tawau.

Zulkifeli said although the armed Filipino militants were present only in Kampung Tanduo in Lahad Datu as well as Kampung Lormalong and Kampung Dasar Lama in Kunak, security personnel were deployed to Sandakan and Tawau to provide security for residents there.

“We are collaborating with the Police and their security forces to protect our country,” he said. A fleet of military trucks ferrying army personnel was spotted heading to Kampung Tanduo in Felda Sahabat, which is said to be twice the size of Singapore with its 57 plantations.

National Security Council secretary Datuk Mohamed Thajudeen Abdul Wahab told the New Straits Times that there had been an increase in the number of personnel from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, marine police, navy and air force patrolling and conducting surveillance over the past two days.

The Star Online reported that continuous explosions could be heard as the police and army moved in on the gunmen who are reportedly firing back.The situation around Tanjung Labian, about 7km from Kampung Tanduo, was tense as more than 300 villagers huddled in a community hall kept on hearing the explosions.

News portal Malaysiakini reported that fleeing villagers from Kampung Sungai Merah, about 2km from the gun battle, were seen squeezed onto lorries, with close to 50 of them on each vehicle leaving the area.

The Star Online also reported that fighter jets screamed over Kampung Tanduo, followed by artillery fire. At least six continuous explosions were heard and journalists at the Sahabat 16 resort said the jets looped back flying low.


It also reported that military trucks were seen going into the battle field. Elite military and Police squads were also on the ground and believed to be involved in shootouts with the Filipino militants.

In Lahad Datu, about 120km from the battle field, preparations are being made at the main hospital to receive casualties.

10 thoughts on “Malaysian Army takes on the Lahad Datu Invaders

  1. This is a non-partisan issue and the opposition should rally behind the BN led government. The country’s territorial integrity is being violated. We should have seen military action from day one. Malaysia should move swiftly to regain initiative after the first initial shock.

  2. I dont understand why our jetfighter miss the target when they fire the rocket. My friend told me they want to avoid casualties since most of the invaders are civilian.

    Only 20 or 30 of them are carrying weapons. I told him why dont they used snipers to take them down.

    He said there are too many people involved in decision making.?

  3. Mustaffa, how sure are you the fighter jets missed their target??…Do you actually knew how, what and when the ground intelligence task force provide details of the target location to the Air Hq??…Those three F16 and five Hawk fighter pilots definitely accomplished their mission with flying colours…I don’t think you knew much as far air warfare is concerned. For your info the fighter jets don’t fire rockets. They drop the most lethal weapon – The Bombs…And you don’t use snipers to attack a 200 strong enemy intruders in a palm oil plantations.

  4. It’s still not over yet.

    Our security forces must not rest on their laurels as there is still plenty of unfinished business.

    Their continued presence must still be seen and felt by the people until such time the situation improves and the threat is diminished.

    As in any incident that involves two sides, especially those that resulted in loss of lives, there will always be supporters and dissenters. The authorities must be to handle this tricky situation well.

    The trauma that the people, especially those from Kampong Tanduo, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Sandakan and all Sabahans in general went through the last two weeks must be cleared and the fear in them must also be overcome.

    Understandably, the people in Kampung Tanduo in Lahad Datu as well as Kampung Lormalong and Kampung Dasar Lama in Kunak, Semporna, Sandakan and Tawau in particular and Sabah in general are now living in fear.

    Needless to say, the remnants, sympathisers, supporters and followers of the royal army of the Sultanate of Sulu are now spread all over the state with some hiding in states other than Sabah. Some would probably have gone home. The hardcore amongst them may be planning to retaliate to avenge the loss of their comrades at the hands of the Malaysian security forces. This cannot be ruled out.

    I do not think members of the Royal Sulu Army will organise an intrusion similar to the one that was just destroyed by our security forces , they may organise pocket resistance in groups of not more than five men here and there, kidnapping, hit-and-run killings, etc. Lesser crimes they may resort to include extortion, arson, petty crimes, robbery and theft.

    A proper heart and mind campaign should have already been planned and implemented and the people must be made to feel assured that their safety is guaranteed. The people must be made to feel comfortable when carrying out their day-to-day activities.

    Flushing of illegals should be carried out not just in Sabah but nationwide and those that have committed crimes must be tried and punished.

    The police and the immigration department must be strict in carrying out their duties and overall, the security forces, police and the military, must be alert at all times.

  5. Indiscriminate straffing and bombing is bound to incur serious collateral damage to property and the civilian population. It is something the RMAF will want to consider. This is stupid.

  6. A band of ragtag lightly armed stragglers can be easily taken out from the ground. You don’t need to go to military school to know that.

  7. As I have said before too many cooks spoil the soup.If I’m not mistaken we have Scorpian tanks over in Sabah,one of my close buddies were commanding them then,wonder why they haven’t used those relics,those original specs Scorpian tanks were light attack tanks,perfect for such conditions,but then again too many generals wanted too many things from those supposedly light attack tanks,that’s why I call them relics,in it’s original form it’s perfect for such operations,instead to fire their guns,you’d have to anchor them first,the corruptions started a long2 time ago in the Defense Ministry and when you really needed them they are totally useless, siapa makan chili dia lah rasa pedas…Oouch!!! but true

  8. I think we should have bought UAV instead of the submarines. Maybe some faster ships too. I think UAV will be great in taking care of our borders.

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