KOTA KINABALU: Events in recent months have made many South-East Asian countries “painfully aware” of the menace of transnational crime, Attorney-General Datuk Abdul Gani Patail said.
“In particular, terrorism has taken root in our region and has affected to a certain extent the political and economic climate of these countries,” he said.
Abdul Gani added that Malaysia’s proposal for the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Treaty was intended for like-minded Asean member countries to pursue a formal agreement among themselves as part of a co-operative regional effort to combat transnational crime.
He said the proposed treaty was aimed at operating in conjunction with other similar existing mechanisms and also not to detract from existing co-operative mechanisms such as Interpol.
Abdul Gani said Malaysia was aware that treaties were not enough to defeat criminals and the country’s proposal was aimed at enhancing measures being taken at national, regional and international levels.
These include the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime and the UN Counter-Terrorism Conventions.
He said the proposed treaty also sought to implement the regional co-operation component of the Asean Work Programme to implement the Asean Plan of Action to Combat Transnational Crime adopted in Kuala Lumpur in May last year.
Abdul Gani said that in formulating the proposed treaty, Malaysia was guided by among others, provisions in the United Nations Model Treaty on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters, drawn up in 1990.
He said Malaysia also referred to the Commonwealth Scheme for Mutual Assistance Criminal Matters (1996) and international co-operation regimes provided in various international and regional instruments.
These include the UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, among others.
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