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17 Mär 2015

DRC considers opening up Virunga national park to oil exploration - includes comments by Soco

In March 2015, the Democratic Republic of Congo’s prime minister has said that his government will engage with the UN to identify ways to explore for oil in the Virunga National Park, a Unesco World Heritage site.

British oil company Soco has carried out exploratory activities in Virunga, concluding a seismic study in July 2014.  Multiple human rights concerns have been raised about its activities there.

The Guardian reports: "In its annual report issued last week, Soco stated that it will not be part of the discussions between the UN body and the government.  However, prime minister Augustin Matata Ponyo told the BBC that 'Soco had brought the issue of the boundary to the government’s attention.'