Walls, fences along 121km Kelantan-Thai border to curb crimes

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KOTA BARU: The Home Ministry will build walls and fences along the 121km Kelantan border with Thailand and gazette it as security area to curb cross-border crimes.

Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the plan would involve constructing wall and perimeter fencing along the bank of Sungai Golok, which is the natural territory separating Kelantan from Thailand.
 
He said the programme should be speeded up as the problem in Kelantan was worse than that in other states.
 
"This was proposed by the Kelantan police and I agree that it should be gazetted quickly. I will apply for a special allocation from the Prime Minister as he understands the limitation faced by the police and others (enforcement agencies).
 
"I think a long-term solution to the problem is to build a wall and gazette the border as a security area," he told a press conference after visiting the Kelantan police contingent headquarters today.
 
Ahmad Zahid said by having the wall and fence, it would deter drugs and arm smuggling activities besides stopping criminals from fleeing across each other's territories.
 
He said residents living along the river would not be relocated but all illegal jetties would be destroyed and more policemen would be assigned to the area.
 
On whether the state government would be informed on the matter, he said security issue was under the Federal Government but Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob would be informed about it.
 
"I also understand that the livelihood of the people especially those living along the border will be affected. However, which is more important compared to the smuggling of firearms and drugs and criminals escaping across the border?
 
"We cannot take into account only the economic factor as the security of the country must also be a priority," he said.

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