KUALA LUMPUR: Following the incidence of Indonesian fans throwing stones and bottles at the Malaysian team on Thursday, the Indonesian sports minister wants athletes to compete with peace of mind in all sports events in his country, including next month’s Asian Games.
Indonesian Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi has communicated this to his Malaysian counterpart, Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman.
Saddiq met with Imam in Jakarta yesterday before going to Surabaya for the AFF Under-19 Cup final between Malaysia and Myanmar.
Saddiq said Imam had made a media statement that action will be taken against those responsible.
On Thursday, Indonesian fans threw stones and bottles at the Malaysian team during the AFC Under-19 semi-final in Sidoarjo.
The horrifying incident happened after the Malaysians beat the Indonesian team 3-2 on penalties. The two teams were tied at 1-1 after extra time.
Imam, who apologised to the Malaysian team for the incident, called on the Indonesia Football Association (PSSI) to act firmly, and guarantee the safety of athletes and all others.
He said adequate security for athletes should not only concern the AFF Under-19 Cup in Sidorajo but to the Asian Games and other sports events in Indonesia.
Saddiq said he and Imam discussed many matters as they were also on the same flight from Jakarta to Palembang.
Saddiq quipped that he and Imam not only have the same job — as sports ministers, but the same idol — Datuk Siti Nurhaliza.