Sunday, July 21

Wisma Putra to handle process to bring home 47 Malaysians from Cambodia

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The former detainees were treated to rice soup, a Cambodian speciality, at a restaurant in Banteay Meanchey town. Bernama Photo

KUALA LUMPUR: Wisma Putra will handle the process of bringing back all 47 Malaysians who have been freed from the Banteay Meanchey Provincial Prison in Cambodia today.

International Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) head Datuk Dr Mustapha Ahmad Marican said he was told that officials from Wisma Putra (Malaysia’s Foreign Ministry) were on their way to Banteay Meanchey to handle the documentation process of all the detainees so that they could return home soon.

According to him, all the detainees were treated to rice soup, a Cambodian speciality, at a restaurant in Banteay Meanchey town.

“They are very happy tonight and thankful for all the efforts taken to free them. This is their most special treat since being detained, and they can’t wait to meet their families.

“We are still awaiting the arrival of Wisma Putra officials to handle the process to take them home. They have been put up at a hotel tonight,” he told Bernama.

Dr Mustapha, who once stayed in Cambodia for 20 years, also thanked the Cambodian government, especially Minister in the Cambodian Prime Minister’s Department, Oknha Datuk Dr Othsman Hassan, for doing so much to help free the detainees.

“I used all my experience of having lived here to help them, my intentions are sincere,” he said.

Earlier, Bernama reported that all 47 Malaysians detained were released today after several rounds of negotiations between the Cambodian and Malaysian governments.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen approved the release after finding that they were duped by a job agency syndicate.

Meanwhile, one of the detainees, Yusuf islam Abdul Halik, was thankful for being released after being detained for 67 days.

“Thank you everyone for not giving up and for praying for us. Now, we are free,” he said. – Bernama