Indonesia will deploy soldiers to hunt down pro-Islamic State militants for the first time in a joint ground patrol with Malaysia and the Philippines, Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu said Friday.
Ryamizard first divulged the joint ground patrol aimed at curbing the spread of IS in the region during a speech last weekend at the Shangri-La Dialogue, a meeting in Singapore attended by Southeast Asian and other world leaders.
He said the three neighboring nations had already established trilateral air and maritime patrols in the Sulu Sea but would step up and elevate their cooperation through the joint operation of land forces on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao “two months from now.”
“The aim of this joint operation is to locate ISIS in the southern Philippines and stop it from spreading,” he said, using the other acronym for IS.
On Friday, Ryamizard confirmed that the expansion of the existing trilateral patrol mechanism would take place. He said Malaysia and the Philippines had agreed.
“I planned it. The implementation is after Eid,” he told reporters after a ceremony at the Defense Ministry in Jakarta.
At a bilateral meeting with his Malaysian counterpart Mohamad Sabu on June 9 in Singapore, Ryamizard said the training exercise “at a company level” would focus on “anti-guerrilla warfare, urban warfare and how to tackle snipers.”
A company is a military unit that usually consists of 80 to 150 soldiers and often commanded by a major or a captain.
Full story: BenarNews
Ismira Lutfia Tisnadibrata
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