By IZATUN SHARI
KUALA LUMPUR: The small group of people in Indonesia who keep playing up the matter of the Balinese Pendet dance despite the explanation given by Discovery Channel have ulterior motives, said Foreign Minister Datuk Anifah Aman.
“The relevant authorities had accepted the explanation (that the dance was wrongly featured to promote Malaysia), but a small group of people refuse to accept it. They are blinded by whatever ulterior motives they have,” he told a press conference here yesterday.
Anifah will meet his Indonesian counterpart tomorrow to discuss why this is happening.
“This is something we need to talk about. It is not fair that some of our students feel unsafe in Indonesia,” he said after the launch of the book When China Rules the World: The Rise of the Middle Kingdom and the End of the Western World by author Martin Jacques.
Anifah said he would be leaving for Jakarta today to meet Hassan Wirajuda tomorrow morning, and also Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono later.
He said the meeting had no fixed agenda, but since anti-Malaysian sentiment remained strong in Indonesia, it was proper to discuss alleviating the tensions among other issues highlighted by the Indonesian media.
Asked whether they would discuss the Indonesian media, he said he respected the notion of press freedom but there had to be a limit when it infringed on the freedom of others and caused tension with Malaysia.
The Indonesian media has been fuelling the flames leading to current tensions, after newspapers accused Malaysia of “always stealing” Indonesian culture and claiming it as its own, following the Discovery Channel commercial.
Anifah said the Malaysian Government had no plans of issuing a travel advisory for Malaysians planning to visit Indonesia, but merely advised potential visitors to avoid places where there might be street demonstrations.
He also said that he might touch on Asean issues such as updates on Myanmar. - The Star