KOTA KINABALU: More than 1,800 people who entered Sabah illegally have been detained by Malaysian security forces in the state's east coast over the past four months.
They were among the 13,262 individuals rounded up and checked for identification documents during special integrated operations carried out by the Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom).
Esscom chief Datuk Rashid Harun (pic) said 798 of those held were in Tawau, another 428 in Sandakan and 390 in Lahad Datu.
“Most of these people were held at public places such as markets," he said after participating in a mass exercise programme in Lahad Datu on Saturday.
He said Malaysian security forces were targeting foreigners who did not have any identification documents.
"Our goal is to rid the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) of illegal immigrants," Rashid added.
He said these operations were also among the measures taken by the Government following the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) report on Sabah's illegal immigrant problem.
Did you find this article insightful?