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Remains of UK journalist identified as US urges ‘accountability’ over Amazon murders

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The United States on Friday pushed for responsibility for the murder in the Brazilian Amazon of a British journalist and an indigenous expert, while greeting defenders of the rainforest.

Brazil’s federal police said Friday it had officially identified the remains of British journalist Dom Phillips, who was found buried in the Amazon after going missing on a book research trip.

Phillips, who disappeared on June 5 with indigenous expert guide Bruno Pereira, was identified through forensic analysis of the excavated remains, the agency said in a statement.

This came after the US on Friday pushed for responsibility for the murders of Philips and Pereira, as they cheered on the defenders of the rainforest.

State Department spokesman Ned Price expressed his condolences to the families of journalist Dom Phillips and his expert guide Bruno Pereira.

“We call for accountability and justice – we must collectively strengthen our efforts to protect environmental defenders and journalists,” Price wrote on Twitter.

The killings were confirmed days after President Joe Biden met his Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro, who was criticized for the episode.

Activists say Bolsonaro has sacrificed law and order in the Amazon as he continues commercial expansion.

Bolsonaro appeared in an interview to blame the missing men for undertaking a “reckless” journey in an area where Phillips was “not nice”.

Bolsonaro, an ally of former President Donald Trump, nevertheless seemed optimistic after meeting Biden on the sidelines of a summit in Los Angeles a week ago.

At the meeting, Biden expressed concerns about climate change and deforestation in the Amazon, a vital “sink” for the planet’s carbon.

Brazilian police said Phillips and Pereira’s killers acted alone and were not part of a criminal group, a claim rejected by indigenous leaders.

FRANCE 24 of AFP

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