Malaysian police are considering prosecuting some of the Filipinos who are in a standoff with local authorities in Sabah since early this month.
Sabah police commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib said police may use "relevant laws" to prosecute the foreigners to ensure no one escapes or enters the area, Malaysia's national news agency, Bernama, reported.
"We don't care where they come from, including the Sultanate of Sulu. They are foreigners who intruded our country and violated our laws and sovereignty," he said.
However, the decision will be made after "various factors" have been considered.
Once the time comes, Hamza said "there will be no more negotiations," and "we can charge them in court, it is up to us."
"Action can be taken under the Penal Code or related laws," he said.
Still, Hamza said the police will use a "suitable approach" and will not compromise the intrusion issue to guarantee sovereignty.
Furthermore, he assured the public the situation is under control, and the "intruders" are pressured by shortages of food and water.
The Filipinos claim to be followers of the Sultan of Sulu and refused to leave the area, despite the Philippines' offer of a humanitarian ship to fetch them. — DVM, GMA News