ASEAN capable of handling Islamic State threat: Malaysia

Malaysia on Friday said the ASEAN as a bloc is capable of handling the threat posed by the Islamic State (IS) through information sharing among the 10 member nations though the region has not been affected by the militant group so far.

PTI| Updated: Feb 13, 2015, 18:32 PM IST

Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia on Friday said the ASEAN as a bloc is capable of handling the threat posed by the Islamic State (IS) through information sharing among the 10 member nations though the region has not been affected by the militant group so far.

"The IS threat is different from the violence that we had to go through previously concerning Al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiah and this is a new phenomenon that we have to face although it is not unique to Malaysia alone," Defence Minister Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said.

"As a region that has been tested with various tragedies such as the missing aircraft and the dispute over the South China, the IS threat can be faced together through information sharing," he said here.

Hishammuddin said that at the moment, the ASEAN region had not been affected by the IS, that has seized large areas in Syria and Iraq.

He said all 10 ASEAN-member nations would announce a joint-stand on the threat at the meeting of defence ministers in conjunction with the 2015 Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (LIMA) exhibition next month.

He added that Malaysia had an advantage because it had cordial diplomatic relations with the United States, China and the European countries.

"Information sharing on intelligence is the best method and I confirm that no one can state today that they know of the best formula to face the IS threat," he was quoted by state-run Bernama news agency.