As deforestation ramps up in the Brazilian Amazon region, an Austrian NGO on Tuesday, 12 October filed a complaint with the International Criminal Court (ICC) “crimes against humanity” Against Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. Under discussion: its role in deforestation and its expected effects on life and human health worldwide.
The complaint by the NGO AllRise, which the ICC is not required to pursue, is based in particular on the science of rapidly expanding “attribution” The consequences of climate change. Studies show that deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has turned the planet’s primary carbon sink into a net source of carbon dioxide.2 in the year 2020.
Clearing more than 10,500 square kilometers of forest
Before Bolsonaro came to power in 2019, the Brazilian Amazon had not registered a year with more than 10,000 square kilometers of deforestation for more than a decade. Between 2009 and 2018, the annual average was 6,500 square kilometers, compared to an average of 10,500 square kilometers during Bolsonaro’s tenure.
But preliminary figures released last month by the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) showed that deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon fell for the second month in a row in August compared to the same period in 2020.
However, Austrian AllRise founder Johannes Wiesmann insists that Bolsonaro did it “Methodically” sought to weaken or Get rid of laws, environmental protection activists, and official bodies regulating these practices.
All of these works “It is directly related to the negative impacts of climate change around the world,” The plaintiffs, relying in particular on the expertise of Frederic Otto, of University College London and lead author of The latest assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change On climate change, qualified “red alert” For Humanity by the President of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres.
Experts who worked on this complaint estimate that emissions attributed to deforestation under the current Brazilian administration will cause more than 180,000 additional deaths worldwide by the end of the century.
“We want to understand the causal relationship with the global climate of what is happening in Brazil, of massive deforestation,” said the founder of Austrian AllRise, Johannes Weisman. “That’s exactly (…) Defining crime against humanity: the deliberate destruction of the environment and its defenders. “
I have already made several complaints
President Bolsonaro is already the target of many complaints before the International Criminal Court.
In January 2021, Kasik Rauni MatuktireThe iconic defender of the Amazon rainforest has previously asked the International Criminal Court to investigate “crimes against humanity” Against Mr. Bolsonaro, the accused “persecution” Indigenous peoples by destroying their homeland and violating their basic rights.
In July 2020, Health workers in Brazil have also called for an investigation by the International Criminal Court “crime against humanity” Against Bolsonaro, this time for his management of the Covid-19 pandemic.
But the International Criminal Court, which was created in 2002 to try the worst atrocities committed in the world and is based in The Hague (Netherlands), is not obliged to follow through on the thousands of applications submitted to the Prosecutor, who independently decides on the cases presented to the judges.
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