After eight suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen ambushed a police guardpost at a Mabul Island resort late on July 12, killing one policeman and kidnapping another, authorities launched a search for the attackers. Some officials noted that the attackers came with intent to kill. The navy has been given permission to shoot intruders if necessary to prevent a threat to national security. The Islamist PAS party sacked members Dr. Mahmud Ahmad, Muhammad Joraimee Awang Rimee, and Mohd Najib Husen, for alleged militant activities; the three men were supposedly on humanitarian missions in Mindanao in the Philippines.
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