The Rainforest Foundation UK (RFUK) has decided to withdraw its membership of the UK Forest Coalition, with immediate effect, following recent investigations and media coverage implicating one of its members, WWF, in serious and widespread human rights abuses associated with protected areas which WWF manages or funds.
The coalition was formed in 2017 and made up of 14 international environmental and human rights organisations, and includes WWF on its management committee.
“WWF has neither condemned the reported atrocities against forest people, nor set out a credible process by which they will be investigated and addressed. Their participation in the Coalition compromises its ability to pursue the recognition of the rights of indigenous and forest peoples,” said RFUK’s executive director, Simon Counsell.
“We feel that RFUK cannot in good conscience remain a member of a formal coalition which includes WWF. We will be using our Coalition membership fees instead to help support the victims of abuses by WWF-managed conservation programmes in the Congo Basin,” Mr Counsell added.