This aerial photo taken on June 13 2021 shows buildings amid smog in Jakarta.
Bay Ismoyo— AFP/Getty Images
September 16, 2021 7:43 AM EDT

An Indonesian court ruled that President Joko Widodo is guilty of neglecting people’s right to clean air in Jakarta in a rare victory for environmental activists.

Jokowi, as the president is known, along with the Jakarta governor, the minister of home affairs, the health minister and the environment minister must take strong action and establish an adequate measure to uphold the people’s right to healthy air in the capital, according to Judge Saifuddin Zuhri in his ruling at the Central Jakarta court on Thursday.

The lawsuit was lodged in 2019 by a group consisting Jakarta residents and activist groups, accusing the government of acting unlawfully by allowing air pollution in the capital to exceed healthy limits. The court on Thursday rejected allegations that the government has conducted human rights violation in the pollution case.

Indonesia ranks ninth among the world’s most polluted countries with an average score of 40.7 last year, which is considered unhealthy for people who are sensitive to pollution, according to IQAir index for air quality. Jakarta, the city of 10 million people, scored 39.6 on the index.

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