The Malaysian government today has decided that it is not safe for the national football team, nick named Harimau Malaysia, to fly to Pyongyang to play for the Asia Cup 2019 Qualifiers.
The directive was made known by Malaysian Sports Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin, after a meeting with the cabinet, in which it was determined that any Malaysian would not be safe in North Korea following recent events which include the dismissal of North Korean ambassador to Malaysia, Kang-Chol.
According to the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM), a letter has been sent to AFC to request a neutral venue for the game scheduled to be played this coming 28 March.
Malaysia had before this received a safety guarantee from the AFC that the match between both Malaysia and North Korea would proceed as planned at the Kim II-sung Stadium , but recent events involving both countries had further soured relations, causing the decision by the Malaysian Government.
FAM had also informed AFC General Secretary, Dato’ Widsor John verbally about the latest decision, and hoped AFC would consider Malaysia’s request.