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Indonesian minister raps 'unprofessionalism' after football fracas

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Indonesia's sports minister has reprimanded the organisers of the football match that ended in Malaysian fans being attacked, Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman said today.

Syed Saddiq conveyed this in a statement as he arrived in Jakarta on transit to Palembang, where he is to meet Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

"The organising committee must act professionally. This applies to all, even among athletes.

“I personally hope that the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) will act sternly, professionally, and must guarantee the safety and security of all," Indonesian Youth and Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi was quoted as saying in the statement.

Nahrawi said in general, organisers of sports events must guarantee the safety of all involved.

“I am asking the organising committee members to provide a safety guarantee to everyone, not just the athletes, but also their supporters. All parties have to take care of one another," he said.

It was reported yesterday Indonesian fans attacked the Malaysian football team with stones and bottles when the latter won the semi-final of the AFF Under-19 Cup at Stadium Gelora Delta in Sidoarjo on Thursday.

The incident erupted after Malaysia beat the Indonesian team 3-2 on penalties.

No injuries were reported.

When Joko met Bro

Meanwhile, Widodo delighted Syed Saddiq upon his arrival in Palembang by calling him 'bro'.

“Today, I am with 'bro' Saddiq. I am very happy there is a smart, intelligent minister in the same car as I,” Widodo said in a video posted by Syed Saddiq on his Twitter.

“Indonesia and Malaysia are two countries with the same roots. Let us cooperate in all sectors; investments, trade, labour recruitment... all (ties) must be good,” said the president.

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