Defenders of the Earth. Global killings of land and environmental defenders in 2016

July 2017
Global Witness

Covers global panorama, where the situation has worsened, the context for killings, moving forward. At least 200 land and environmental defenders were killed in 2016, the highest on record, spread across 24 countries. Cites their names. With many killings unreported, and even less investigated, likely that the true number is actually far higher. This tide of violence driven by an intensifying fight for land and natural resources, as mining, logging, hydro-electric and agricultural companies trample on people and the environment in their pursuit of profit. As more and more extractive projects were imposed on communities, many of those who dared to speak out and defend their rights were brutally silenced. Tells the stories of these activists and the threats they’ve faced. Highlights the courage of their communities as they stand up to the might of multinationals, paramilitaries and even their own governments in the most dangerous countries on Earth to be a defender. Defending national parks is now riskier than ever, particularly in Africa where large numbers of rangers are being killed, especially in the Democratic Republic of Congo.