Malaysia-Thailand to explore five possible agreements, including on transfer of prisoners

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PUTRAJAYA, Jan 9 (Bernama) — Malaysia and Thailand on Wednesday agreed to explore five possible agreements, including on transfer of prisoners between both countries, to enable the inmates to continue their imprisonment in their homeland so that they can be closer to their families.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said such an agreement (on the prisoner exchange), could be the first in the region, and that Malaysia had just amended the related law at the last Parliamentary session to enable pursuit of such an agreement.

He told this to reporters after receiving a call from Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister Dr Chalerm Yoobamrung here today.

Hishammuddin said other agreements to be explored included a treaty on extradition, memorandum of understanding (MoU) to combat transnational crimes, the legal framework on crime and on sharing of information, and that all of them would be finalised soon so that the working groups could start discussing all the issues related

“All these will help strengthen bilateral relations and will help the process of ensuring the provinces in southern Thailand stabilise which will benefit the whole region if not the two countries, bilaterally,” he said.

Hishammuddin said both countries also agreed to cooperate on the issue of Thai workers here, whereby they would be identified and legalised if needed.

“There are not many (Thai workers in Malaysia), probably around 6,000-7,000 people but with cooperation between the government and the Thai embassy, I think more will come forward so that we can zero on on their actual number in the country.

“It is a win-win situation, because we can assist in looking after their welfare, and we can also know exactly how many Thais are working in Malaysia,” he said.

Meanwhile, Yoobamrung said he was happy that many issues has been discussed during the meeting, and hoped that they could be implemented soon to benefit the people of both countries.

He said both parties also shared the same views and sentiments on how to bring security and stability to Thailand’s southern border provinces.