Ecocide- Belgium recognizes ‘ecocide’ as both national and international crime

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Source-This post on Ecocide- Belgium recognizes ‘ecocide’ as both national and international crime is based on the article “Cockpit of Europe: Belgium leads continent in becoming first to recognise ‘ecocide’ as crime” published in “DownToEarth” on 27th February 2024.

Why in the News?

Belgium, known as Europe’s cockpit, has become the first in the European Continent to recognise ‘ecocide’ as both a national and international crime.

What is Ecocide?

1. About– Ecocide means significant harm or destruction to ecosystems, often caused by humans.

2. Commonly cited examples- Deforestation during the Vietnam War, the destruction of the environment during the Russian invasion of Ukraine, deforestation in Indonesia and the Amazon rainforest, oil pollution in the Niger Delta and the Chernobyl disaster.

3. Legal restriction– There is currently no international law prohibiting ecocide during peacetime; however, the Rome Statute criminalizes it.

4. The term ‘ecocide’ was popularized by Olof Palme when he accused the United States of ecocide at the 1972 UN Conference on the Human Environment.

Read moreGlobal push for recognising environmental destruction a crime

About Belgium

Source- BBC

1. Location– It is a nation located in Northwestern Europe.

2. Borders– Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg, France, and the North Sea.

3. Regions– Belgium is renowned for its complex institutional structure, which is divided into three autonomous regions.
a. Flanders
b. Wallonia
c. Brussels-Capital Region

4. Population diversity– Belgium has two primary linguistic groups:
a. The Flemish Community, accounting for roughly 60 percent of the population
b. The French Community, comprising around 40 percent.
Note– There’s also a small German-speaking Community, making up about one percent of the population in the East Cantons.

5. International Affiliation:
a. It is a founding member of the European Union, Eurozone, NATO, OECD, and WTO.
b. It capital Brussels serves as the de facto capital of the European Union and and host the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) headquarters.

UPSC Syllabus- Geography and Places in news/Environment

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