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CUT outside the FCDO, London, Jan 2023.jpeg

Komeok Joe and Celine Lim with CUT Campaigners, outside the Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office

 London, Jan 2023 . Photo credit: Kelly Hill

About Us

Clean Up the Tropical Timber Trade (CUT) is an emergent UK solidarity campaign which aims to stop the greenwashing and import of this 'dirty' timber to Britain from Sarawak, in Malaysian Borneo, and from across the tropics more generally.


CUT is working in partnership with Indigenous activists in Sarawak, led by SAVE Rivers Network and Keruan- Voices of the Penans, and supported by Friends of the Earth in the UK and Malaysia and Bruno Manser Fonds in Switzerland.

Cut and 'stop the chop' in sarawak

#StopTheChop was a campaign to halt rainforest destruction and associated human-rights abuses in Sarawak (Malaysian Borneo) started by SAVE Rivers Network. The campaign challenged international certification schemes accused of greenwashing ‘dirty’ timber for the world market, enabling unsustainable deforestation to continue, against the wishes of local communities and global allies. 

Why Does Stop The Chop Need our Help? 

In 2021 SAVE Rivers was issued with $1.1m defamation law suit by Samling Group - a giant Malaysian timber, palm oil and property conglomerate. This ‘SLAPP’ (Strategic Litigation against Public Participation) effectively silences the valid complaints of Indigenous Peoples and solidarity groups, and allows logging to continue unhindered in Sarawak.


The UN’s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, has expressed concern over this case saying “The purpose in such cases is to silence criticism and deter future opposition to a company’s projects through intimidation.” And over 100 international organisations have signed a letter urging Samling to #StoptheSLAPP

Pic3_Lim and Joe_reading message to global forest defenders.jpeg

tropical rainforests are the richest eco-systems on our planet
they are home to half of all land-based life on earth, and we want to protect them...


what do we want to achieve?

Our AIMS are to

  • amplify and help connect up the voices of Indigenous Peoples and resident communities from Sarawak, and beyond, who are fighting to protect and restore their essential and irreplaceable rainforest lands. 


  • halt UK imports of inadequately certified timber from Malaysia, and other tropical regions, until timber certification bodies can be trusted to do their job properly (which may be never).


Our OBJECTIVES are that

  • we will open channels for Sarawak’s Indigenous People and forest campaigners to direct their concerns to UK policy makers, influencers, suppliers and consumers. 


  • we will assist British importers, suppliers and consumers to make informed choices regarding the purchase of materials and products implicated in rainforest destruction, and highlight the lives and work of Indigenous Earth protectors.


  • we will mobilise the UK public to demand trade policies and international agreements that support a sustainable and equitable future for all, from our Government.


  • we will put pressure on UK traders to stop importing inadequately certified timber, wood-products and palm-oil, and encourage them to demand that associated certification schemes bring their policies and procedures up to scratch.


We hope to meet our OBJECTIVES through: 

  • close integration with campaigners in Sarawak

  • delivering letters and setting up meetings for Sarawak’s forest protectors in the UK

  • creative demonstrations

  • traditional media campaigns 

  • social media campaigning and online communication tools

  • public participation actions, petitions, boycotts etc. 

  • fundraising for Indigenous forest protectors in Sarawak

partnership working

CUT is an emergent solidarity campaign being developed by: 

  • Celine Lim, manager of SAVE Rivers Network in Sarawak. A formidable Indigenous campaigner and former educator, she is a member of the Kayan tribe and is passionate about amplifying marginalised voices. Celine explains “I believe in the power of representation. When I show up and speak up, I do not do that in isolation. I carry with me the language, the struggles and the identity of my community. And even more so as a woman in a society that has systematically undervalued women’s voice in policymaking, civic rights and equality.”


  • Annina Aeberli, a campaigner with The Bruno Manser Fonds (BMF) in Basel. BMF is a Swiss organisation committed to protecting the threatened tropical rainforests and the rights of Indigenous peoples, predominately in Sarawak.  


  • Hoon Seong, an NHS consultant doctor from Malaysia, who lives with her family in Manchester. An environmental activist (and a member of XR Doctors) Hoon is a Director of Salford’s Green Teach Community Farm and Sustainability Hub and also campaigns with Bersih to promote free and fair elections in Malaysia.


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