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    Oct 07, 2016

    Singaporean supporter of ISIS arrested in August

    A 33-YEAR-OLD Singaporean supporter of terror group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was arrested here under the Internal Security Act in August, the Ministry of Home Affairs said yesterday.

    Asrul Alias, a technician, has been placed under a two-year Restriction Order - which curtails his movements and activities - after investigations, the ministry added.

    It also said in a statement that he will undergo religious counselling while under the Restriction Order.

    The ministry said Asrul started reading online material on the conflict in Syria in 2014 and began viewing online sermons by radical preachers and videos of ISIS fighters in combat.

    He shared pro-ISIS propaganda on social media and also spoke up against criticisms of ISIS that he encountered online, the ministry said.

    Asrul stopped posting pro-ISIS material online after being warned by a family member and a friend some time last year and early this year.

    But he remained supportive of ISIS and continued to consume the terror group's propaganda online.

    "As he was not an imminent security threat, he was not detained but given a Restriction Order under the ISA," the ministry said.

    A person who is under a Restriction Order must abide by certain conditions.

    For instance, he cannot change his residence or employment, or travel out of Singapore, without the approval of the Internal Security Department's director.

    In its statement, the ministry also announced that Singaporean Mohammad Razif Yahya, 28, was released conditionally from detention under a Suspension Direction this month "after it was assessed that he no longer posed a security threat that required him to be placed in preventive detention".

    He had been detained in August last year for voluntarily fighting in Yemen after he began studying at a religious institution there in January 2010.

    Razif had signed up for armed sentry duties and went through sniper training. He was armed with an AK-47 assault rifle and a Dragunov sniper rifle, and was involved in fighting the Houthis.

    The ministry may revoke a Suspension Direction and re-detain the individual if he does not comply with certain conditions, such as prohibiting from associating with militant or terrorist groups, it said.