SEMPORNA: Nine attempts of kidnapping for ransom were foiled with the curfew implementation in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) since July last year.

Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) operations centre chief of staff Datuk Md Rahim Mohamad said the kidnappers targetted on tourists going for diving activities in certain areas.

He attributed the success in foiling the kidnap to cooperation from all quarters, including resort operators in Esszone.

"Therefore, we hope such a cooperation can be continued. We also call on resort operators to comply with all the guidelines and advice given by Esscom, especially in their handling of tourists going for diving activities in risk areas," he added.

He said this during a security briefing to resort operators at the Pulau Mabul police station near here today.

Md Rahim said Esscom had identified several measures to be observed by resort operators to enhance security of tourists in the Esszone area.

"Resort operators also have to ensure their boats are equipped with a systematic communication system as they are required to report to the security team before carrying diving activities at sea," he added. --Bernama