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SEMPORNA: The aftermath


SEMPORNA: The mood was sombre at the district police headquarters' surau here as the body of Sergeant Aziz Sarikun arrived about 9.45am today.

About 50 of his colleagues from the General Operations Force and family members are preparing to perform the final prayer for the policeman killed in Saturday's combat at Kampung Simunul water village nearby.

Several of them were saying comforting words to each other for their comrades' falling. Their faces tell it all - sad and at the same time, angry of the intruders.

Shortly after his body arrived, some of the GOF members and Aziz's family  started reciting Yaasin verse, which was brought from Tawau Hospital.

Aziz, 49, was among 6 policemen from the GOF which were killed during a shootout with some 10 gunmen, believed to be from the Royal Sulu Army or their sympathisers, that occurred about 7.30pm Saturday.

Aziz, from Batu Pahat in Johor, will be buried at the Wakaf Baru cemetery in Batu 2 here after the final prayer. It was learnt that his wife is from Semporna, and their family had been residing here for over 20 years.

His colleagues said the victim was from Company B of the GOF's 14th Battalion, and had been serving in Semporna for 23 years.

Meanwhile, the names of other policemen, besides Aziz, that were killed in the shootout was released earlier this morning.

They are Superintendent Ibrahim Lebar from Subang Jaya ,Selangor (Special Branch); district Special Branch chief Assistant Superintendent Micheal Padel from Kg Bidayuh, Serian in Sarawak; Sergeant Baharin Hamit from Inanam, Kota Kinabalu (Special Branch), Corporal Salam Togiran from Jalan Apas, Tawau (Tawau district headquarters' transport department); and Lance Corporal  Mohd Azrul Tukiran from Rantau Panjang in Klang, Selangor (GOF).

Ibrahim and Mohd Azrul's bodies are scheduled to be flown to Subang Air Force base, and expected to arrive there at 6pm today.



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