WWF statement on murder of conservationist in Costa Rica



Posted on 08 June 2013  | 
WWF condemns the brutal murder of Jairo Mora Sandoval, a 26 year-old conservationist who dedicated his life to protecting and defending wildlife in Costa Rica. He sadly lost his life while patrolling nesting sites of one of the most endangered and charismatic creatures, leatherback marine turtles.

Our thoughts are with Jairo’s family and friends during this difficult time.

WWF joins other groups calling on the Government of Costa Rica for justice and for bold security measures that assure a safe environment for those committed to working towards conservation.

“Stricter measures protecting civilians, as well as full enforcement of national laws protecting marine turtles, should be put in place to ensure incidents like this one don’t ever happen again,” said Dr Carlos Drews, Director of WWF's G lobal Species Programmme.

“Conservation should not be a dangerous job or activity, but unfortunately linkages between poaching and other forms of crime mean that protecting our natural world is increasingly risky. Wildlife crime is becoming more organized and life threatening than ever before. That is unacceptable.”

“Costa Rica enjoys a global reputation as an environmentally friendly country, and a prime ecotourism destination. Incidents such as Jairo’s death will quickly tarnish that reputation if Costa Rica fails
to act.”

“WWF will continue to partner with people around the world to stand-up and give voice to species in need. It's time for political leaders to take concrete action to protect wildlife, people and enforce the rule
of law,” Drews said.
The leatherback turtle named Yalimapo.
Leatherback turtles are endangered due to thefts of their eggs, entanglements in fishing gear, and warming sands from climate change that kill their eggs. This one is being fitted with a radio transmitter for research.
© Claude Rives - Merimages Enlarge

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