WWF Pakistan described the victims whose car plunged into a ravine in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as “young and passionate environmentalists”
Five WWF employees were killed in a car accident in Pakistan as they tried to monitor a forest protection program.
Their vehicle crashed into a Galiyat ravine, killing the forest experts. They were traveling to Nathiagali (a town nestled among thick forests and mountains in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, northwest Pakistan).
They were identified by WWF as Aamir Saeed Khan (provincial coordinator), Iftikhar Hussain (campaign organiser), Atif Ali Khan (geographic information systems analyst), Rafiullah (forest surveyor) and Farhan Afridi (driver).
A spokesperson for WWF Pakistan told Climate Home News the organisation had been “deeply affected by this tragic incident”.
“We have lost young and passionate environmentalists and a senior forester who had been associated with the organisation for years. This loss is very personal for many of us. We are still struggling to come to terms with the sudden loss of these precious lives and our thoughts are with their families.”
We are deeply sorry to inform you that five of our colleagues and friends, who were on their way from Abbottabad to Nathiagali, died in a car accident this morning. We offer our deepest condolences to the family. We ask God to keep us all safe.
— WWF-Pakistan (@WWFPak) December 15, 2021
The employees were going to inspect a forest that is part of the Redd+ scheme, which is a World Bank-funded scheme to reduce forest deforestation and forest destruction.
Climate minister Malik Amin Aslam paid respects to the victims of the tragedy Twitter, saying: “May Allah bless their souls.”
Anis, a Twitter user, identifies himself as Anis replied: “Heart broken for us. Being a part of WWF we are unable to express our feelings at this tragedy… They were the real heros who were on way to save mother earth for our future.”
“Extremely tragic news. We from KP Forest & Wildlife Department are indeed grieved on this tragedy,” said Abid Majeed, an official at the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government.
Prime minister Imran Khan has made the protection of forests a key part his presidency. His “10 billion tree tsunami” programme aims to plant 10 billion trees across the country and restore more than a million hectares of forest.
The program aims to increase climate resilience, such as extremes in rainfall, while also absorbing CO2 from atmosphere and creating jobs.
Source: Climate Change News