Washington, June 9 (ANI): Interpol and the United Nations have joined forces to launch an initiative to tackle global forest crime.
Under the 'Project Leaf', which is a partnership between the UN Environment Programme (Unep) and Interpol, with funding provided by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, the organizations will target criminals involved in illegal logging and timber trafficking.
"The international legislation to protect forests and curtail illegal logging demonstrates this," the BBC quoted Interpol's Environmental Crime Programme manager, David Higgins, as saying.
He said that illegal logging was no longer an issue that was restricted by national boundaries.
"Project leaf will ensure these global laws are supported by global enforcement and that the criminals responsible are brought to justice - no matter their location, movements or resources," Higgins added.
The Interpol said that the scheme will also provide support to enforcement agencies in countries with the biggest problems, as it is estimated that more than a quarter of the world's population relies on forests for their livelihoods, fuel, food and medicines.
"Collusive corruption and fraud in the forestry sector undermines the rule of law and... significantly hampers efforts to tackle poverty among the world's poorest people," the Interpol was reported, as saying.t added that, in order to be an effective force against criminal activity, it would be necessary for any action to be "coordinated, collaborative and transnational". (ANI)