2020 deadly yr for nature defenders
A record 227 people were killed worldwide in 2020 for their defense of nature -- more than four a week on average, and almost three-quarters of them in Latin America, environmental rights organization Global Witness said Sunday.
For the second year in a row, Colombia was the country with the highest number of killings -- 65 -- while Nicaragua had the highest per-capita rate, with 12 murders up from five in 2019, the group said in its annual report.
Seven of the 10 deadliest countries for land and environmental defenders were in Latin America, with 165 killings recorded, though Global Witness said the number was "almost certainly" an underestimate. After Colombia, Mexico had the second highest number of deaths globally, with 30.
It was followed by the Philippines (29), Brazil (20), Honduras (17), the Democratic Republic of Congo (15), Guatemala (13), Nicaragua (12), Peru (six) and India (four).
"This is a crisis against humanity," said the report.
"Land and environmental defenders that have stood up to powerful interests have paid a heavy price -- with their freedom, livelihoods and even their lives."