Environment

Indonesia Minister Accuses Harrison Ford of “Harassing” Interview For Climate Change Documentary

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht
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Indonesia’s Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan claims he was “shocked” during a Monday interview with actor Harrison Ford, who “attacked” him with questions about climate change.

Ford, 71, was in Indonesia to film part of an environmental documentary, according to Presidential Advisor Andi Arief.

Arief accused Ford and the film crew of “harassing state institutions” and threatened to deport him, although he is schedule to depart Tuesday anyway. Before he goes, he’s scheduled to meet with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Arief said Hasan thought there would be time to talk with Ford before the interview began, but he launched right into questioning. He said Hasan was “shocked that as soon as [Ford’s] crew came in, they started filming and interviewing him ... and attacking him with questions.”

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“His emotions were running very high,” Hasan told the state-run newspaper.

Although logging is illegal in Indonesian rain forests, the practice is apparently rampant.

“I understand the American man just came here to see Tesso Nilo [a national park on Sumatra island] and wanted violators to be caught the same day,” Hasan said.

“I was only given the opportunity to say one or two sentences during the interview,” he added.

“There’s no privilege for him, although he is a great actor,” Ariel said. “His crew, and those who were helping him in Indonesia, must be questioned to find out their motives for harassing a state institution. If necessary, we will deport him.”

Indonesia’s central government held control over the rain forests up until May 2013, and the Ministry of Forestry gave huge concessions of land to companies for logging and plantations. While Indonesia effectively gave indigenous people the right to manage their own forests, the logging still occurs.

The series Ford is filming called “Years of Living Dangerously” will appear on the Showtime network.

Sources: Yahoo!, ABC, Mongabay