In French Guiana, a gendarme of the GIGN was shot dead while participating in an operation to fight against illegal gold panning, we learned Saturday, March 25 from a source close to the file, confirming information from the site Actu17.

The soldier, aged 35, was operating on the gold panning site of Dorlin, in the center of this overseas territory, where this illegal activity is a source of significant pollution, said this source.

Emmanuel Macron expressed "his great emotion", announced the Elysee. The head of state "salutes the courage and memory of this non-commissioned officer, fallen under fire, engaged since 2009 in the national gendarmerie and who served at the GIGN branch of Cayenne since 2019," said the presidency of the Republic in a statement.

More than 1,000 forest patrols in 2022

In 2012, two soldiers were killed and two gendarmes seriously wounded by bullets during a joint army/gendarmerie operation against illegal gold miners in French Guiana, already at the Dorlin site.

In 2022, French authorities conducted more than 1,000 forest patrols against illegal gold panning, seizing 59 kg of mercury and 5 kg of gold, according to a report from the prefecture.

According to local mining operators, 10 tons of gold are illegally extracted from Guyana each year by "garimpeiros" (miners).

With AFP

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