Independent report says WWF knew about suspected abuses by rangers but didn't do anything
In March 2019, Buzzfeed News published the first of a series of articles tying international conservation giant WWF to violent and severe human rights abuses allegedly committed by park rangers working in Central Africa and South Asia. Based largely on field investigations by the advocacy groups Survival International and the Rainforest Foundation UK (RFUK), the reports sent shock waves through the conservation industry, depicting out-of-control eco-guards enforcing the boundaries of protected wildlife reserves through the torture, rape and murder of people living in nearby communities.
In response to the broad outcry that followed, WWF commissioned an independent investigation by a panel of human rights experts that included a former UN high commissioner for human rights as well as luminaries in the fields of conservation and protected area management. On Nov. 24, after more than a year of interviews and review of internal WWF documents, the panel released a 160-page final report.