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Saturday, 14 March, 1998, 05:06 GMT
Singapore and Malaysia crackdown on illegal immigrants

The authorities in Malaysia and Singapore have expressed increasing concern at the number of economic migrants from Indonesia entering their countries illegally.

The Singapore home affairs minister Wong Kan Seng told parliament that the country risked being overwhelmed, presenting Singapore with a grave social and security problem.

In Malaysia, where more than seventeen thousand illegal immigrants have beeen detained since January, the foreign minister, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is reported to have asked Indonesia to provide naval vessels to help repatriate them.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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