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  • Context (DTE): The European Commission (EC) has removed Tanzania from the list of countries eligible for Euro conservation grant to be launched in East Africa as part of its NaturAfrica initiative.
  • According to Maasai International Solidarity Alliance (MISA) and Survival International, it was removed due to its harsh evictions of the Maasai people.

Kenya & Tanzania Map - PMF IAS

  • The recent call for proposals targets the Eastern Rift Savannahs and Watersheds (ERiSaWa) component of NaturAfrica, and two KLCDs (Key Landscapes for Conservation and Development):
    1. SOKNOT (Southern Kenya Northern Tanzania) ecosystem. Within this, it will include activities only in Southern Kenya.
    2. Northern Kenya ecosystems.
  • Survival International is a human rights organisation that campaigns for the rights of Indigenous and/or tribal peoples and uncontacted peoples.
  • MISA is an international alliance standing in solidarity with the Maasai of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Loliondo.

NaturAfrica Initiative

  • NaturAfrica is an initiative to support biodiversity conservation in Africa that takes an innovative, people-centred approach.
  • It was announced in 2019 as part of the ‘European Green Deal‘.
  • Objective: Tackle biodiversity loss through restoring and protecting a network of protected areas and high value ecosystems and promoting the sustainable management of surrounding landscapes whilst creating decent incomes and jobs in green sectors for local populations.

SOKNOT (Southern Kenya Northern Tanzania) ecosystem

  • It is a transboundary conservation programme with the aim of restoring the wildlife migratory corridors and dispersal areas in Kenya and Tanzania.
  • It stretches from Lake Victoria to the Indian Ocean.
  • It aims at establishing a transboundary conservation area of about 134,000 km2, which will be a large wildlife corridor between the Maasai Mara-Serengeti, Amboseli-Kilimanjaro, and Tsavo-Mkomaz.
  • It is famous for:
    • Ngorongoro, Serengeti, Kilimanjaro (UNESCO World Heritage Sites)
    • Lake Natron (Ramsar Site)
    • Amboseli (UNESCO Biosphere Reserve)
    • Lake Natron, Loita, Amboseli, West Kilimanjaro (Four important bird habitats)
    • Three Wildlife Management Areas (Mara-Serengeti; Amboseli-West Kilimanjaro & Tsavo-Mkomazi)
    • Mara-Serengeti (seventh wonder of the world).
  • The landscape is home to many threatened and endangered species, such as elephants, black rhinos, lions, cheetahs, hirola, and African wild dogs.

SOKNOT (Southern Kenya Northern Tanzania) ecosystem - PMF IAS

Credit: WWF.UK

Maasai people

  • The Maasai people of East Africa live in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania along the Great Rift Valley on semi-arid and arid lands.
  • They are semi-nomadic pastoralists.
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