LAHAD DATU, March 3 (Bernama) — Five policemen, one of them an officer, were killed in an ambush by a group of armed men, two of whom were also killed, in Kampung Sri Jaya, Simunul, Semporna, Sabah, Saturday night.
Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar said the incident occurred at 8 pm at the water village.
The policemen, from the Semporna District Police Headquarters, had been ordered to carry out an investigation at the village following a tip-off that there was a group of armed men there, he told a news conference here on Sunday.
Also present at the press conference were Chief of Defence Forces Gen Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin and Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order director Datuk Salleh Mat Rashid.
Ismail said the policemen were shot while heading towards a house in the village and opened fire in self defence.
Ismail said police were investigating whether the armed men were linked to the more than 150 armed intruders in Kampung Tanduo, Lahad Datu, about 150 km from Semporna.
Last Friday, two VAT 69 commandos, ASP Zulkifli Mamat, 29, and Sergeant Sabarudin Daud, 46, were killed and three other policemen injured in a shootout with the armed intruders, claiming to be members of the royal army of the Sulu Sultanate in the Philippines, in Kampung Tanduo, 130km from Lahad Datu.
Twelve of the intruders were also killed in the incident.
Ismail said he would name the five policemen later.
In a separate development, he said, police detected another group of 10 men, three of them armed, in Kampung Lomalong and Kampung Dasar Lama, Kunak, about 60 km from here, at about 10 pm on Saturday.
“We’re tracking their movement,” he said.
Ismail said the police also detained three of the more than 150 armed intruders who had entrenched themselves in Kampung Tanduo since Feb 9.
“The three men are believed to have attempted to leave the group,” he said, declining to provide further details of the arrests. -BERNAMA