Malaysia is setting up offshore military bases in Sulu Sea to prevent Filipinos from fleeing to Sabah in case the Bangsamoro Basic Law fails to pass this June and war erupts. “If we have a wall of offshore bases, we may have a chance to stop the exodus of people,” Malaysian Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said last Friday as quoted by Malaysian news provider The Star.
“If the peace process can’t go through in June then it means war. Twelve years of talks and because of one incident, they will have war,” Hishammuddin added. The incident he is referring is the Mamasapano Special Action Force operation that kills 44 elite cops.
Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said over the state radio “we cannot speak for Malaysia. What we are earnestly pursuing right now is what the President announced very recently on the National Peace Summit, that we can discuss in a non-impassioned manner the peace process and, specifically, the BBL.”
“We believe that the sentiment of the people is towards peace. It’s just that we need to look at the peace process from the prism of all the stakeholders involved, not necessarily in just one incident, the Mamasapano,” Lacierda added.