La Via Campesina, Friends of the Earth International, Focus on the Global South, the World Rainforest Movement and more than than 120 organizations from around the world sent a letter to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, FAO, in Rome, on the occasion of March 21st, the UN International Day of Forest. The letter demands that the FAO change its present definition of forests.
The letter appeals to FAO to reflect in its definition what makes a forest a forest for the communities who depend on them: “In contrast to the existing process within FAO, a process of elaborating a new and more appropriate definition of forests must effectively engage those women and men who directly depend on forests. An appropriate forest definition must support their modes of living, their networks and organizations. On the International Day of Forests we commit to continue the campaign to move the FAO and all concerned institutions to initiate a process led by forest communities to formulate a new definition of forest.“
During the coming three months, groups will also present the demand to national and regional FAO offices.