Mar 3, 2021
The deadly job of protecting DR Congo's Virunga National Park
Protecting the forests of Virunga National Park in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo - home to endangered mountain gorillas - could be described as one of the toughest jobs on the planet. In the past 12 months, more 20 of the park's staff have been murdered - and last week rebels were accused of killing the Italian ambassador to DR Congo, his security guard and driver in an attack within the park. At the same time, a British oil company formerly called Soco had been granted permission from the government in Kinshasa to extract oil by drilling on the park's land. The two million people living in the region of the park mainly live on under $1.50 a day. "What we've found is that by generating electricity from the park, almost immediately you get small businesses developing around it," says Mr De Merode.
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