13 July 2005

Liberia: Timber Assoc. Excepts to U.S. Embassy's Decision

Monrovia — The Liberia Timber Association (LTA) says its attention has been drawn to a United States Embassy's release of its endorsement of the Forest Review Committee's recommendation for the cancellation of all timber concessions in the country.

The LTA in a press statement issued over the weekend noted, "We are taken aback at this new development especially so when it is stated in the article of The INQUIRER of July 8, 2005, Vol. 14 No. 116 that this has also been acknowledged by the United Nations Security Council in resolution 1607 (205).

"It was our belief, that the review was at the behest of the Liberian Government, now we see political maneuvering by the United States Government and the United Nations in pressuring the Government to endorse a recommendation without reference to the sector that will be victimized by the acceptance of this recommendation.

"It amazes us that before results of the Forest Concession Review Committee, initiated by the Liberian Government has been forwarded by the Executive Branch to the Legislature, the bona-fide representative body of the people, it has reportedly been endorsed by the American Government and acknowledged by the United Nations which comes across as an agreement de-facto, thus usurping the role of the Legislature."

Concluding, the LTA said, "Again we will like to state that we reject these recommendation and we hope the Government will be mindful of its obligation to the protection, promotion and the implementation of the due process of law in these matters."

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