An illegal gold mine operating in the protected Leuser Ecosystem, Aceh, Sumatra. Indonesia’s earth is known for its rich gold deposits, drawing fortune seekers from across the country, especially poorer areas with few employment options. But while illegal gold mining – mining for gold without a permit – may be lucrative for some, for others it can be deadly.
Recently a cliff collapsed at an illegal mine in Mandailing Natal, North Sumatra Province, fatally trapping 12 female workers in a two-metre deep pit. The victims, who were aged between 30 and 55, were found after two other women who had also been looking for gold raised the alarm. Photo: Paul Hilton / Earth Tree Images
- Paul Hilton / Earth Tree Images
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