Indonesia: Forest fires break out on Malaysian-controlled land hinh anh 1A forest fire in Indonesia (Photo: AFP/VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Indonesian Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya Bakar said on September 13 that some forest fires in its territory had started on land used by subsidiaries of Malaysian companies.

Earlier, Malaysia has said smoke from fires on Indonesia’s Sumatra and Borneo islands over the past month has drifted over the border, forcing it to close schools and issue public health alerts.

Indonesia has dismissed those accusations saying fires have broken out in other countries, and some of the fires in Indonesia had been spotted in palm oil plantations owned by at least four subsidiaries of Malaysian companies.

The plantations had been sealed off after the fires were spotted, the Indonesian minister said.

Smog occurs often in the dry season in some Southeast Asian nations, including Malaysia, due to traditional burning practices in agriculture in Indonesia to clear land for palm oil and pulp plantations.

Malaysia is planning to seed clouds to make rain to reduce dust level. Local authorities recently handed out 500,000 face masks to people in Sarawak state as air quality in the eastern state has reached unhealthy levels due to smog from forest fires./.