Malaysian Police Confirms IS Involvement in Bomb Attack

Malaysian Police Confirms IS Involvement in Bomb Attack
Malaysian military and police personnel patrol an outside shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Monday, Jan. 25, 2016. Malaysia's leader has defended strict security laws to fight terrorism as the Islamic State group warned of revenge over a crackdown on its members. (AP Photo/Joshua Paul)

What you need to know

Authorities are concerned about terrorism becoming a growing threat in Malaysia.

Malaysian police has confirmed that Islamic State (IS) was involved in the bomb attack in Puchong on June 28. This was the first successful terrorist attack in Malaysia launched by the terrorist organization, which shows the influence of IS is spreading rapidly in Southeast Asia.

The bomb attack, which targeted a bar, injured eight people. Police initially investigated the attack as a business dispute, but soon determined it was related to terrorism.

A Malaysian named Muhammad Wanndy Mohamed Jedi, who claims to be a member of IS, posted on Facebook declaring the attack was carried out by IS. After further investigation, the authorities confirmed at a press conference on July 4 that IS was involved in the attack.

Andrin Raj, director of International Association for Counterterrorism and Security Professionals South East Asia Region, said that terrorism is a growing threat in Malaysia and adds that attacks against the country will likely continue. Raj says that while the bomb attack in Puchong seemed to have been approved and authorized by IS, Malaysian terrorist groups have yet to develop actual IS cells. "But the fact is, this will eventually grow into ISIS cells," he told CNN.

Some have suggested that the attack may have occurred in response to remarks by inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar, who said, “Come back if you dare,” in response to a video made by a Malaysian militant before the Puchong bomb attack. However, Khalid Abu Bakar said he does not regret making the comment and that it was not meant to challenge IS.

First Editor: Olivia Yang
Second Editor: J. Michael Cole