KUALA LUMPUR, March 18 – Talk about Malaysia offering its citizens who joined ISIL in Syria to return home had gone to the international news last week.
Aljazeera reported that while some countries are attempting to strip former fighters and their families of citizenship and prevent them from returning, Malaysia says citizens will be allowed to come back, provided they comply with checks and enforcement and complete a one-month government-run rehabilitation programme.
But they should be charged for waging war against the state
Malaysia has laws against waging war on the Yang Dipertuan Agong. We also have laws against activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy.
Before we look at the laws we have, let’s first consider if ISIL is waging war against the YDP Agong or our parliamentary democracy.
ISIL declared worldwide caliphate
In June 2014 the group proclaimed itself a ‘worldwide caliphate’ and began referring to itself as the Islamic State (ad-Dawlah al-Islāmiyah; IS). As a caliphate, it claimed religious, political and military authority over all Muslims worldwide.
Now who is the head of religion in Malaysia? Yes, the YDP Agong. Who is the head of military in Malaysia? Again, the YDP Agong.
And by declaring worldwide caliphate over Muslims all over the world on religious and military, not only ISIS is challenging the sovereign powers of the YDP Agong but also legitimacy of parliamentary democracy in Malaysia.
Now let’s look at the laws of our country.
Offences Against the State
Waging or attempting to wage war or abetting the waging of war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, a Ruler or Yang di-Pertua Negeri
Penal Code Section 121. Whoever wages war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong or against any of the Rulers or Yang di-Pertua Negeri, or attempts to wage such war, or abets the waging of such war, shall be punished with death or imprisonment for life, and if not sentenced to death shall also be liable to fine.
Whilst ISIL is far away, its claims of worldwide caliphate and the fact that they had been waging war and expanding their territories, are evidence of their intention to expand as far and wide as possible. If given time and strength, they would be in Malaysia.
Or maybe they are already here, waging war in silence, training their Malaysian soldiers in Syria, and to bring them back ‘peacefully’ to stage a war in Malaysia.
Offences against the authority of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Ruler or Yang di-Pertua Negeri
Penal Code Section 121B. Whoever compasses, imagines, invents or intends the deposition or deprivation of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong from the sovereignty of Malaysia or the deprivation or deposition of the Ruler, his heirs or successors, or of the Yang di-Pertua Negeri from the rule of a State, or the overawing by means of criminal force or the show of criminal force the Government of Malaysia or of any State, shall be punished with imprisonment for life and shall also be liable to fine.
Abetting offences under section 121A or 121B
Penal Code Section 121C. Whoever abets the commission of any of the offences punishable by section 121A or 121B shall be punished with the punishment provided for the said offences.122. Whoever collects or attempts to collect men, arms or ammunition, or otherwise prepares to wage war with the intention of either waging or being prepared to wage war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong or any of the Rulers or the Yang di-Pertua Negeri or abets the waging or the preparation of such war, shall be punished with imprisonment for life or imprisonment for a term not exceeding twenty years, and shall also be liable to fine.
Concealed intent to facilitate a design to wage war
Are these ISIL terrorists coming back with concealed intent to facilitate a design to wage war? They went to wage war, as if that is not evident enough but we have laws for that too:
Concealing with intent to facilitate a design to wage war
Penal Code Section 123. Whoever by any act, or by illegal omission, conceals or attempts to conceal the existence of a design to wage war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong or any of the Rulers or the Yang di-Pertua Negeri, intending by such concealment or attempted concealment to facilitate, or knowing it to be likely that such concealment or attempted concealment will facilitate, the waging of such war, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall also be liable to fine.
Challenging Parliamentary Democracy via worldwide caliphate
We have laws against that too:
Activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy
Penal Code Section 124b. Whoever, by any means, directly or indirectly, commits an activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to twenty years.
Are we saying that those who joined ISIL to support the idea of worldwide caliphate did not commit any act detrimental to parliamentary democracy?
Attempt to commit activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy
Penal Code Section 124c. Whoever attempts to commit an activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy or does any act preparatory thereto shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to fifteen years.
Now with all of that, how can we even argue that those ISIL jihadis wanting to return to Malaysia are not criminals akin to traitors waging war against the state?
It’s hard to argue that what they did are not against any of the above laws.
So since we have established that they indeed were waging war against the state, we now have to ask if any attempt to allow them to return home legal?
Intentional omission to give information of offences against section 121, 121a, 121b or 121c by a person bound to inform
Penal Code Section 121D. Whoever knowing or having reason to believe that any offence punishable under section 121, 121a, 121b or 121C has been committed intentionally omits to give any information respecting that offence, which he is legally bound to give, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to seven years or with fine or with both.
So, PDRM? By you having known or having reason to believe that any offence punishable by section 121 had been committed intentionally, are you omitting from upholding the law under Section 121D
AG must look into this before Malaysia bring back ISIL militant traitors to the country and create bigger problems in the long run.