Unfriendly neighbours: A group of Indonesian nationalists blocking a road and stopping vehicles in search of Malaysian nationals in Jakarta yesterday. — AFP
Anti-Malaysian sentiments are running high in Indonesia. News agencies including Bernama and AFP have reported that a group of Indonesian men, armed with sharpened bamboos, has set up a road block to identify Malaysians. Passers-by in Jakarta's Jalan Diponegoro have been asked to show their IDs by these angry Indonesians.
The emotions have been fanned by the local Indonesian media which have blamed Malaysia for almost everything. Malaysians have been branded as "thieves" following the use of a Balinese dance in a documentary on Malaysia. Discovery Channel has since made a correction but the Indonesians are still angry.
Malaysians have also been branded as arrogant and in one case, a town experiencing traffic jam, a low budget air, presumably Air Asia, has been rapped for bringing in too many tourists. Last night, the Malaysian Students Department sent out SMS alerts to Malaysian students to avoid certain parts of Jakarta for their own safety.