No ceasefire unless intruders surrender unconditionally: Najib

KUALA LUMPUR, March 7 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said today Kuala Lumpur will not consider any request for a ceasefire so long as the armed intruders in Sabah do not lay down arms unconditionally.

Najib, who visited Sabah three days after security forces launched an offensive against the armed intruders in Lahad Datu, said Philippine President Benigno Aquino III had contacted him for Malaysia's reaction to the call for a ceasefire by Jamalul Kiram III.

"I informed President Aquino that they need to surrender unconditionally and their weapons have to be handed over to us," he told a news conference in Felda Sahabat 16 in Lahad Datu.

Media reports from the Philippines today quoted Jamalul Kiram as asking his people to lay down their arms in Lahad Datu after several members of his group were killed in an offensive launched by the Malaysian security forces on Tuesday after the intruders had killed eight policemen on March 1 and 2. Eighteen of the intruders were also killed in the two skirmishes with the security forces.

Meanwhile, United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon proposed that the parties involved in the Sabah situation seek a peaceful solution.