By Phyllis Lee
The first known case of a Singaporean fighter being featured on a private recruitment video from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has made its rounds online.
Released by ISIS’s media arm, Al Hayat Media Centre, the 3-minute-and-30-second video shows a fighter dressed in camouflage military attire identifying himself as “Abu Uqayl from Singapore”, and propagandising Muslims to join ISIS.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) believes that the fighter is Singaporean Megat Shahdan bin Abdul Samad, 39.
In a statement released yesterday (Sept 24), MHA added that local security agencies have been aware of his presence in Syria, and have been monitoring his activities for some time now.
Shahdan left Singapore in 2014 to work in the Middle East, where he was believed to have been radicalised. He subsequently made his way to Syria to join ISIS, and is believed to still be there with the group.
MHA said that it had previously shared Shahdan’s case confidentially with Singapore’s community leaders.
“Anyone who is in contact with him or knows of anyone in touch with him should report it to the authorities,” the ministry urged.
In a Facebook post yesterday, Minister for Home Affairs and Law K. Shanmugam said that “over time, we must assume more of this will happen.”