New anti-logging commission in Peru after murders

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Monday September 22, 2014
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Peruvian government will investigate illegal logging along the Peru-Brazil border. The investigation follows after the murder of four indigenous leaders two weeks ago. The killings are supposedly conducted by loggers.

Ana Jara Velasquez, the Peruvian President of the Council of Ministers, announced a commission which she said would have powers to stop the logging. According to Jara Velasquez police have so far arrested one person suspected of involvement in the killings.

The four tribal leaders were killed on their way to Brazil for a meeting to discuss illegal logging. Among the killed was the outspoken anti-logging activist Edwin Chota. The four men had received several death threats from illegal loggers. Indigenous people recently have felt increasing threat from deforestation.

Chota requested protection over his ancestral lands. This has been refused. Now Jara Velasquez states that the new commission will address the issue of land ownership and titles in the area. According to a World Bank repost (2012) an estimated 80% of Peruvian timber export stems from illegal logging.

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