No one from Kiram group surrendered: spokesman

by Kathlyn dela Cruz

Posted at Mar 01 2013 06:38 PM | Updated as of Mar 02 2013 02:38 AM

MANILA -- The spokesman of a Sultan of Sulu denied that 10 men from the group of Raja Muda Agbimuddin Kiram in Sabah surrendered to Malaysian authorities after a firefight ensued between the two forces Friday.

Spokesman Abraham Idjirani also belied the report of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) that two of Kiram's men escaped and ran towards the sea.

"Walang katotohanan ang inire-report ng Department of Foreign Affairs. Kasi kung nag-surrender agad-agad ang kapatid [ni Sultan Jamalul Kiram III] ay tatawag muna sa amin," Idjirani told radio dzMM.

"Kung tumakas sa dagat, saan sila kukuha ng boat?" he added.

He also said the sultanate's followers were still not ordered to retreat and return to the Philippines.

Quoting Sultan Kiram, Idjirani said: "Mahihinto lang itong standoff kung sila ay completely captured at namatay na."

Idjirani also insisted that 10 people, including one woman, from Kiram's group were killed while four others were injured in the firefight.

He added that two of them have already been identified. "Ngunit wini-withhold natin sapagkat ayaw ni Sultan Jamalul Kiram na mag-escalate ang emotion."

DFA spokesman Rual Hernandez had said the DFA is still validating the claim made by the group of Kiram that 10 Filipinos were killed.

"What we have from the Malaysian ambassador is that 10 men of the Kirams surrendered and 1 owner of the house where Kiram stayed was killed. From the Malaysian authorities, 2 were killed and 1 was wounded after the Malaysian police vehicle was fired upon by the Kiram group," he said.

'Undiplomatic' emissary

The sultanate spokesman also claimed the emissary repeatedly sent by the Philippine government to the Kiram clan here in the country has been threatening them.

He said the emissary was an undersecretary from the Department of Justice (DOJ).

"Ang laging pinapadala na emisaryo ng Malacañang sa halip na magsalita ng malumanay ay undiplomatic ang sinasabi," he said.

"Kasi pinapakita nila kay Sultan Jamalul what particular accusations that the sultan and the group ay pwedeng sampahan. Ang ganung pagsasalita ay threatening at pananakot. Sa ganitong negosasyon, kailangan ang ipapadala ay malumanay magsalita," Idjirani said.