KUANTAN, Pahang: Malaysia's immigration department will further intensify operations to detain illegal immigrants from Aug 31, said its director general Mustafar Ali.
Employers who hire and harbour illegal foreign workers would also be detained, he said.
"We have started the voluntary surrender programme ... better known as 3 + 1, which enables all illegal immigrants in the country to return to their countries of origin voluntarily," he told reporters on Friday (Jul 20).
"So, they still have the chance to surrender until Aug 30 before we take a more firm approach," he added.
READ: Malaysia continues crackdown on illegal migrant workers even as businesses cry foul
So far more than 3,000 illegal immigrants have been arrested nationwide for various offences in the Op Mega operation, which was launched on Jul 1, according to the director general.
The immigration chief has previously said illegal migrant workers, once arrested, would be blacklisted and then deported, while employers who hired unregistered foreign workers could be fined, jailed and even whipped under the law.