Indigenous protesters seek refugee status for tree

Indigenous activists in Brazil asked Norway's embassy in the capital Brasilia to grant "refugee" status to a Jatoba tree in a symbolic protest on Tuesday against the destruction of the Amazon rainforest.

It was staged by the Articulation of Indigenous Peoples of Brazil, or APIB, and coincided with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's appearance at the United Nations General Assembly.

Deforestation has increased under Bolsonaro's government, whie he pushes to open more of the Amazon to mining and agriculture.

At the UN this week, he promised to end illegal deforestation, although environmental groups were skeptical.

APIB leader Sonia Guajajara pleaded for help to save the tree and the Amazon rainforest, saying Norway is the only country that has legally stopped deforestation.

The Norwegian embassy in Brasilia opened its gates to the protestors' truck and the Jatoba tree was planted on embassy grounds.

The Jatoba is sometimes referred to as Brazilian Cherry due to its burgundy-colored hard wood.

It grows in the Amazon and other biomes of South America.

Indigenous people use its sap for medicinal purposes.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting