Mahfuz dismisses teleconference risks to Sirul, claims safe from extradition


(Malay Mail Online) – PAS’s Datuk Mahfuz Omar today disregarded a warning that the teleconference he is arranging between Sirul Azhar Umar and Malaysian media tomorrow will undermine the former commando’s chances of getting asylum in Australian.

Instead, the PAS information chief claimed the danger to Sirul, who was convicted of murdering Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu, was inconsequential as Australia will not send him back to Malaysia to be hanged.

“Australian laws would not allow a person to be extradited home to face death penalty,” Mahfuz told Malay Mail Online.

This morning, Malay Mail Online reported migration expert Robert Chelliah’s warning to PAS that the media conference it is arranging will harm Sirul’s opportunity to seek political asylum in Australia.

Instead of the ad-hoc teleconference that the Islamist party has tentatively scheduled for Monday, Robert said Sirul must instead formalise the details he will supposedly reveal about the 2006 murder of Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu in a sworn affidavit.

Today, Mahfuz said he is unclear if Australian authorities have granted permission to conduct the teleconference, but that PAS will continue with the event scheduled at its office here tomorrow.

Sirul and former chief Inspector Azilah Hadri were charged with the murder of 28-year-old Altantuya in 2006 and convicted in 2009.

They were freed after the appellate court acquitted them in 2013, but the Federal Court reversed the acquittal last month and sentenced them to death, marking the end to the eight-year saga.

Sirul left for Australia prior to the Federal Court decision and is currently held there following an Interpol red notice that was issued pursuant to Malaysia’s request.

Since his detention, he has threatened to speak to the media in Australia and reveal details into the mysterious 2006 murder of the Mongolian.

Malaysia’s attempt to extradite him is currently frustrated by an Australian law that prohibits the country from sending an individual home to face the death penalty.