Five years ago, Chut Wutty was murdered in Cambodia. He was one of Cambodia’s leading campaigners against illegal logging and land grabs. He was killed in the Cardamom Mountains in Koh Kong province, while researching illegal logging with two journalists from the Cambodia Daily.
The Ogiek are one of the last groups of hunter gatherers in Kenya. Their ancestral land is in the Mau Forest in the Rift Valley of Kenya. For many years, the Kenyan government has threatened them with eviction, in the name of conservation. Last week, the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights ruled that the Ogiek have the right to live in the Mau Forest and that the government of Kenya was wrong to evict them.
“For WWF, partnering with Indigenous Peoples is an essential part of our conservation work.” This sentence comes from WWF’s latest newsletter from its international forest and climate team. The article is written by Jolly Sassa Kiuka and Flory Botamba who work for WWF in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Since the 1960s, the Sengwer indigenous people living in the Embobut forest have been evicted many times. In recent years, the evictions have intensified.
“The aim of reducing the emissions from forest destruction and degradation caused by industrial agriculture, logging, mining for fossil resources, etc. is today decisive to the survival of humankind and our planet. However, when the tool to achieve this aim is the trading of emission credits (offsets), we arrive at the wrong solutions.”
The Borneo Case is a new film that documents the destruction of more than 90% of Sarawak’s forests and investigates where the profits from the destruction went. As the Bruno Manser Fund notes, “Vast illicit assets have been acquired by the former Chief Minister and current Governor of Sarawak, Abdul Taib Mahmud, and his closest family members.”
Michael Schmidlehner is a researcher, NGO founder and climate justice activist in Rio Branco, capital of the Brazilian state of Acre. He submitted this Guest Post about an academic paper looking at a REDD project established on the land of the “Acapú” indigenous people in Brazil.