Indonesia: Suit against ExxonMobil focuses on human rights abuse by Indonesian troops
Date: 30 Aug 2008
A US federal court has ruled that ExxonMobil has a case to answer in a suit over alleged killings and torture by Indonesian troops acting to protect the company's property.
The suit, brought by 11 villagers, will go to trial and is expected to focus a new spotlight on the relationship between companies and the military in countries where they operate. It accuses Exxon of responsibility for acts of human rights abuse carried out by security forces which had been paid for by the company's subsidiary ExxonMobil Oil Indonesia.
The head of Indonesia's armed forces has said that the military never received funds from the company.
If the case were proved against the company, it could have implications for a number of other US firms that have been accused of complicity with abuses by military forces.
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In a recent article, the BBC's economics editor Robert Peston highlighted the fact that in 2012 the chances are that the economy - punch drunk as it is from the various flavours of debt crisis it has been pummelled with over the course of the year - will be hit by the collapse of a major bank and / or government.
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