The Malaysian Students Association of Japan (MSAJ) denounced the actions of the followers of Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, following an incident of flag burning at the Japanese embassy. Supporters of Anwar stepped on and burned a Japanese flag as a sign of protest over the alleged denial of entry for their famous leader.
Japan presently has 3,000 Malaysian students in various districts of Kanto in Tokyo, Kansai in Osaka and in Hokkaido, Tohoku, Shikoku and Kyushu. MSAJ President Zed Al Habshee Syed Abdul Hamid expressed sadness and shame over the actions of their countrymen saying that, “despite the incident, we are still being treated well here and are not receiving any pressure or negative effects from teachers, friends and other Japanese.” He noticed that even after what happened, TV channels continue to show destination spots in Malaysia the same week of the incident. “That’s what made us ashamed,” he added, acknowledging the way Japan wants to maintain diplomatic ties with their country.
Anwar was banned from entering the country due to his failure to secure a visa. While Malaysians are not required to get a visa when entering Japan, Anwar’s previous conviction for a bribery and sodomy case in Malaysia in 1999 requires him to have a visa. When the news of Anwar not allowed to enter Japan surfaced, around 30 supporters of the leader gathered in front of the embassy to stage a protest last Tuesday. The opposition leader claimed at first that the reason for his ban was because of political machinations, saying there were “hidden hands” behind such an action.
[via New Straits Times]