Authorities in Madagascar over the weekend launched a series of raids to uncover rosewood and other precious hardwoods illegally logged from the country’s national parks in the aftermath of a March military coup.
Illicit logs were found buried at several sites and were seized by authorities. The timber is now under guard and several people have been questioned and detained in connection with the seizures. Some of Madagascar’s business and political elite are said to be involved in the trafficking, although details are still sparse at this time. More information should be coming soon.
Madagascar’s national parks were pillaged for their hardwoods in the months following the coup that displaced President Marc Ravalomanana. A subsequent investigation into the extent of logging found that thousands of hectares of protected rainforest were affected.
Gibson Guitar under federal investigation for alleged use of illegal rainforest timber from Madagascar
(11/19/2009) Federal agents from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service raided Gibson Guitar’s factory Tuesday afternoon, due to concerns that the company had been using illegally harvested wood from Madagascar, reports the Nashville Post.
House resolution condemns plunder of natural resources in Madagascar
(11/04/2009) A House of Representatives resolution introduced by Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon) condemns the illegal plundering of natural resources in Madagascar, reports the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).