Authorities have arrested a man after he attempted to swim from Malaysia to Saudi Arabia’s holy city of Mecca, according to multiple media reports.
The 28-year-old reportedly jumped into the sea near Tanjung City Marina and was later found floating in the water after police received calls reporting the incident.
It turned out that the same man had previously attempted to swim across the sea to Seberang Prai “after failing to obtain approval for inter-district travel to meet a friend,” the New Straits Times reported.
“Initial investigation showed that both incidents involved the same man. This time, the man said he wanted to reach to the holy Muslim city of Mecca,” Police chief Assistant Commissioner Soffian Santong was quoted as saying.
“The man has been taken to Penang Hospital for treatment and mental health evaluation. He is now at the Jalan Perak psychiatric ward for further treatment.”
Investigations concluded that drugs were not a factor in the incident, and it was unclear why the man attempted to swim to Mecca.
Malaysia is 4455 nautical miles away from Saudi Arabia by boat.