PH, Indonesia, Malaysia forge collective effort vs terrorism, extremism

MANILA-- The Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia are intensifying defense and intelligence collaboration in the wake of the recent attack of the IS-affiliated Maute group in Marawi City.

Secretary of Foreign Affairs Alan Peter S. Cayetano announced Wednesday that foreign ministers, top security and intelligence officials will meet on Thursday, June 22, in Manila to discuss plans for intense trilateral cooperation aimed at preventing extremists from establishing operational bases in the Southeast Asian region.

The aim is to make a team effort, rather than each country fending off extremism by themselves, Cayetano said.

Joint maritime operations by Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines to fight transnational crimes and terrorism in the Sulu Sea were launched Monday, June 19, in Tarakan, North Kalimantan, Indonesia.

The Trilateral Maritime Patrol was inaugurated in the Tarakan Naval Base in a ceremony attended by Department of National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu and Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.

As security concerns threaten the robust economic growth of the region, countries are forging a collective effort against terrorism and extremism.

Source: Philippines News Agency