KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, The incident where five Malaysians were abducted, allegedly by Tentera Nasional Indonesia (TNI), in the Wong Rangkai forest, near the Serian-Kalimantan border on Dec 11, will not affect military relations between the two countries.

Malaysia’s Defence Minister, Mohamad Sabu, said Malaysia and Indonesia have built strong bilateral relationship in all areas, especially defence, and should there be problems they would be discussed at the negotiating table.

Cooperation between the two nations had always been good and we will not allow the incident to jeopardise our relationship.” he told a press conference, after the 52nd Armed Forces Ex-Servicemen Affairs Corporation (PERHEBAT) convocation ceremony here today.

A local newspaper today reported that five locals aged between 15 and 64 were kidnapped in the forest, located about 400 metres from the Serian-Kalimantan border.

It was reported that the Malaysians were held up by several armed men, dressed in military fatigues, who claimed they had cut down trees in the forest area. The five were, however, released a few days later, following negotiations at the border.

Malaysia has sent a protest note to Jakarta condemning the mistreatment and detention of its citizens by the Indonesian security forces. The protest note was sent through the Indonesian embassy here last Friday.

Source: NAM News Network