Botswana's war on its indigenous population, the Bushmen of the Kalahari, has reached a new pitch, writes LEWIS EVANS. No longer content to arrest and intimidate them as they engage in subsistence hunting on their own land, the state has begun to shoot them from aircraft. These illegal, genocidal acts must stop!
At the 'United for Wildlife' conference in Botswana, backed by princes Charles and William, Indigenous organizations from around the world are calling on world leaders to recognize tribal peoples' right to hunt for subsistence.
As we celebrate 'World Wildlife Day' today, there's little for nature's best defenders to be glad of, says human rights lawyer Gordon Bennett. Indigenous Peoples around the world are routinely attacked, starved and cut off from the lands and wildlife they have protected for millennia under a flawed and brutal model of 'conservation'.
Ten years after promises of 'no mining' in Botswana's Central Kalahari Game Reserve, a $5 billion diamond mine opens a few miles from a Bushman village. Elsewhere in the Reserve, fracking is under way. And President Ian Khama, a director of Conservation International, denounces the Bushmen as 'poachers' and evicts them from their land.
A Bushman from the Central Kalahari travelled 5,000 miles from his home in Botswana today to tell the Prince of Wales, ‘We're not poachers - we hunt to survive. Persuade Botswana to change its policies, or the Bushmen will soon be finished.'
Botswana's President Khama has banned all hunting - even for Bushmen who hunt to feed their families, who now face acute hunger. But an exception is being made for trophy hunters paying up to $8,000 to hunt giraffes and zebras.