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Minister laments alleged police 'backing' over illegal mining firms

Tempo - December 14, 2022

Nesa Aqila, Jakarta – The Coordinating Minister for Politics, Law, and Security Affairs Mahfud MD acknowledged the public discourse regarding alleged high-ranking law enforcers who actively protect illegal mining corporations.

During a Youtube announcement on Wednesday, Dec. 14, he insisted that this practice is difficult to abolish due to the seniority culture in law enforcement institutions.

"We have yet to talk about the backing they have [in protecting] a mining corporation. We can't solve that yet because of the seniority that exists," said Mahfud MD in the national work meeting with the illegal levies task force on December 13. "We must establish boundaries. What can we do to overcome this."

In the meeting, he also mentioned the harmful factors regarding mining permits and the production forest concession (HPH), which the government has legally granted to corporations, but must wait until the permit ends before the government can act.

"We cannot just revoke [the permits] as that would be a legal violation," he explained.

Suspicions regarding law enforcers abusing power and influence to protect illegal mining activities first emerged in November after a number of mass organizations held a public discussion regarding mining oligarchs and connections to the police.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1668176/minister-laments-alleged-police-backing-over-illegal-mining-firm