JOHOR BAHRU – The Home Ministry (KDN) is identifying the best method to screen refugees in the country to verify their status.
Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan said with the screening in place, the status of refugees could easily be identified especially to flush out abuse of refugee status by those involved in terrorist activities.
“We are afraid that those who came by unofficial channels may claim themselves as refugees when they are criminals on the run or even terrorists.
“(And) they want to use Malaysia as their base to obtain income to be repatriated to their country of origin or use Malaysia as a shelter to plan and so on,” Nur Jazlan told reporters after launching the Pulai Parliamentary Constituency Negaraku Farmers Roadshow here today.
For the time being, his ministry is cooperating with UNHCR to identify the best method to record 150,000 refugees including background information on their families and financial status.
The cooperation which began on April 1 is expected to be completed in three months.
Nur Jazlan also said KDN respected the card issued by UNHCR , however it was important the card meet the security policy of the country due to terrorist activities in the region.
‘KDN wants each refugee to be thoroughly screened and issued cards by KDN itself for our authorities to be confident with the refugee status.
“At present when UNHCR cards are issued, we are not involved completely in terms of background screening and so on, and the information is not submitted to our agencies so KDN felt it is better for us to recheck all refugees and issued with our cards to facilitate their identification,” he said. – BERNAMA