In what seems to be the closing of a month-long investigation into the escape of Mas Selamat from the Whitley Detention Center, the Committee of Inquiry has released a report detailing the escape of Mas. However, due to the highly sensitive nature of the report, only a short executive summary is available. A ministerial statement is also available, but entails the executive summary as well.

The feeling is that there seems to be some closure to his escape, even though he’s still at large and it’s unlikely that he’ll ever be captured alive. Oh well, nothing much we can do, can we?

For the executive summary (no PDFs, all converted to text), go here. =)

FUGITIVE terrorist Mas Selamat Kastari probably planned his escape over a period of time and seized the opportunity when a ‘confluence’ of factors gave him the break to flee from the Whitley Road detention centre on Feb 27, said Home Affairs minister Wong Kan Seng on Monday.

He gave Parliament a full account of the escape, based on the findings of the Committee of Inquiry (COI), which submitted its report to him on April 10.

The five-page executive summary of the report was also presented in Parliament.

The COI, said Mr Wong, had found ‘no evidence of connivance or collusion’ or any help given to the Jemaah Islamiah leader by anyone within the detention centre.

It took the Jemaah Islamiah leader under 11 minutes between 3.54 pm and 4.05 pm to make his escape – from the time he was brought to the toilet in the family visitation block and the time when the alert to his breakout was raised.

Mr Wong said he agreed with the COI’s findings and accepted all its recommendations.

He added that he was satisfied that the three-member committee had done a thorough job.

Because of the sensitivity of the details, including the identity of the Internal Security Department and other security personnel and the precise work they do, he said the Cabinet has agreed that it is not possible to release the entire report ‘without harming national interest and endangering the men and women who serve the nation’.

‘We had also considered releasing the COI’s report with the sensitive parts blacked out, but that was not feasible as the details are extensive. It would not only make understanding the report difficult, but also fuel the distraction of baseless speculation,’ said the minister.

‘However, we are very conscious that Members of this House and the public have a keen and valid interest in the findings of the COI. Hence, the Government has decided to release the executive summary of the COI report to show that the COI had carefully considered all the issues.’

Article obtained from on 21st April 2008

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