Brazil’s President Accused of Crimes against Humanity for Destroying Amazon
By Staff- Agencies
Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro was accused on Tuesday of "crimes against humanity" at the International Criminal Court [ICC] for his role in the destruction of the Amazon.
Austrian environmental justice campaigners Allrise filed the official complaint at The Hague-based court Tuesday morning.
They asked for legal proceedings against Bolsonaro and his administration for actions "directly connected to the negative impacts of climate change around the world."
The complaint accuses the Brazilian leader of waging a widespread campaign resulting in the murder of environmental defenders and of endangering the global population through emissions caused by deforestation.
It said that Bolsonaro was responsible for over 980,000 acres of lost rainforest each year, and that monthly deforestation rates accelerated by up to 88 percent since he took office on January 1, 2019.
The team of experts estimated that emissions attributable to the Bolsonaro administration due to rampant deforestation will cause over 180,000 excess heat-related deaths globally this century.
While there have been at least three other similar complaints at the ICC since 2016, organizers say this one is the first to highlight the clear link between forest loss and global human health.
"What's happening in Brazil -- mass deforestation -- we want to understand the causal link to the global climate," AllRise founder Johannes Wesemann said.
He further mentioned: "It is exactly what the Rome Statute defines as a crime against humanity: the intentional destruction of the environment and environmental defenders."