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KUALA LUMPUR, June 1 -- A total of 3,300 members of the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) have been deployed to assist the police at roadblocks, static posts and Mobile Patrol Vehicle patrols throughout the country.
Defence Force chief Gen Tan Sri Affendi Buang said the deployment through the operation codenamed ‘Op Penawar’ involved all three military branches, namely the Army, Navy and Air Force.
“This also covers aspects of security control and patrols in high-risk areas that have been placed under the Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO), COVID-19 Low-Risk Quarantine and Treatment Centres (PKRC), as well as the implementation of Compliance Operations Task Force to monitor as well as enforce compliance with Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) throughout the duration of the Movement Control Order (MCO)," he said in a statement today.
He said through ‘Op Benteng’, the National Task Force (NTF) with the cooperation of all security agencies had succeeded in tightening control at land, sea and air borders as well as facilitating the respective agencies in carrying out their operations.
"Overall, through ‘Op Benteng’ conducted throughout the country, a total of 12,285 members were mobilised to curb the entry of illegal immigrants, especially through rat lanes (illegal routes)," he said.
He added that from May 6 till yesterday, 15,759 individuals were arrested, comprising illegal immigrants, skippers and smugglers.
He said there were a total of 8,617 reports involving 5,221 arrests, 1,593 seizures, 379 deportations and 1,421 sightings involving seizures estimated to be worth RM528.6 million during the period.
He the movement of illegal immigrants was expected to increase through rat lanes during the first two weeks of the total lockdown imposed beginning today, besides cross-border criminal activities in the northern Peninsula and the Sarawak-Kalimantan border.
"Therefore, the NTF will ensure that all security and enforcement agencies involved are prepared in all aspects to guard the country's borders," he said.
In another development, Affendi said the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the MAF’s Field Hospital at the Kepala Batas Hospital in Penang, had been fully operational since May 30 with a capacity of 24 beds.
For the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme, he said the MAF had given 112,348 doses of vaccine to 56,174 officers and members of the MAF so far, based on the field of assignment and risk factors, including staff from various security and enforcement agencies at the NTF Headquarters.
"In June, the MAF will receive 81,900 doses of vaccine to continue the vaccination programme for MAF personnel, while the MAF is expected to receive an additional quota of vaccine to be given to veterans and family members of MAF personnel," he said.
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