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UTM Taking Steps To Ensure Extreme Ideas Are Not Spreading In Campus

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JOHOR BARU: Universiti Tekno­lo­gi Malaysia is taking proactive mea­sures to guard against any Islamic State (IS) ideology being spread within its Skudai main campus.

Deputy vice-chancellor (Student Affairs and Alumni) Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Ismail Abd Aziz said to date, no such information was received.

“We will continue to monitor the situation,” he said after a lecture on Transformation of the Civil Service by the Public Service Department director-general Tan Sri Moha­mad Zabidi Zainal in Skudai yesterday.

Dr Mohd Ismail said UTM had its own ways to tackle any extreme Islamic ideology from spreading within the campus.

He said UTM did not see any reason to further screen foreign students presently studying at the Skudai campus as the authorities had already done it.

“The screening would have been conducted at the country of origin by Malaysian embassies before the students received their visas and passes to come here,” added Dr Mohd Ismail.

He said UTM had some 3,000 foreign students from 70 countries, in­­cluding those from the Middle East pursuing post-graduate studies.

“We are targeting to increase the number of foreign students to 5,000, the figure which we used to have before the Arab Spring revolution in certain countries in the Middle East,” he said.

The deputy VC said UTM was confident that the Home Ministry and its agencies had the capability to handle the IS threat in Malaysia.

The UTM main Skudai campus spans across 1,144.85ha with 600 buildings and about 20,000 students, and academic and non-academic staff.

Recently, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi expressed concern that the influence of IS was strongest in institutions of higher education.

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