Breaking News: Virunga Park Chief Warden Shot


Virunga National Park’s Chief Warden, Emmanuel de Merode, was shot today in an ambush on the road from Goma to Rumangabo. He is in serious but stable condition. No further details are available on the attack at the present time.

All media enquiries should be directed to:
Joanna Natasegara

Photograph courtesy of Brent Stirton/Getty Images


  1. Rudy Boon April 16, 2014 Reply

    Very sad to read this and I do hope Emmanuel will soon recover.
    Wishing himself, his family and all members at Virunga National Park strenght and courage to keep the good work going.
    Let’s keep hoping that one day all agression will stop.

    Rudy Boon

  2. Anseeuw Willem April 16, 2014 Reply

    Very sad news!
    I wish his family and friends a lot of strenght,
    I wish Mr de Merode a lot of courage in his recovry!

  3. Valerie Cailean April 16, 2014 Reply

    Prayers and ‘bon courage’ to Emmanuel and his family at this time.
    It is wonderful work that you do for the gorillas in Virunga!

  4. Wolfgang April 16, 2014 Reply

    News such as this are stomach-turning – so much destruction that does not lead to peace and progress, things for which Emmanuel and the park team stand. I wish Emmanuel and everybody at Virunga great inner sources of strength and determination, and for Emmanuel I hope and pray that a speedy recovery is possible. I also think of the many rangers that have been wounded or killed in the last years doing the same. A sad day – hopefully followed by much better news down the road for the whole region. Get well, Emmanuel!

  5. Jo Thompson April 16, 2014 Reply

    Praying for your speedy recovery, Emmanuel.
    Our thoughts are with you, your family, your team, and the brave men who serve beside you.
    Will be watching anxiously for news …..

  6. Jan Stevens April 16, 2014 Reply

    Get well Emmanuel! The world needs you…
    Take care and I very much hope for your full recovery.
    Good luck!


  7. Linda April 16, 2014 Reply

    All our thoughts are with you Emmanuel.
    Strength to your family, friends and all the ranger team at Virunga.
    All at G4G x

  8. Amanda April 16, 2014 Reply

    Thoughts are with you and hoping for a full and speedy recovery.

  9. Umayanga Hettige April 16, 2014 Reply

    Pray for him and our thoughts are with him and his family. We cant afford to loose good people like him ,when the entire world needs more like him. Get well soon Emmanuel!

  10. Toos April 16, 2014 Reply

    This chocking message was on the Dutch news already: . All my best wishes for soon and full recoverage to Emmanuel !!!

  11. Patricia Coe April 16, 2014 Reply

    healing thoughts and best wishes for a full and speedy recovery from this horrible assault, Emmanuel. May the strength of your family and all the incredible rangers help you through this difficult time. You are a true hero and the Virunga Park needs you so much.

  12. Anne Williamson. April 16, 2014 Reply

    Here’s wishing you a speedy recovery. This should never have happened-so sad.

  13. Bruno Hugel April 16, 2014 Reply

    This is a terrible news!!! :0
    Get well Emannuel, we’ll be following your recovery closely
    My thoughts to you and your family

  14. Dr swati April 16, 2014 Reply

    Praying emmanuel that you recover. Our prayers for you day and night. God protect his brave men.

  15. Dave April 16, 2014 Reply

    I am so extremely sorry to read this news. I am wishing for a good and complete recovery. Emmanuel de Merode had done so many good works for the people in North Kivu. Please keep us as up to date on his condition.

  16. Gary April 16, 2014 Reply

    find those responsible and the people who paid them to do this. upgrade the firepower of the rangers. give them flak jackets to help protect them. Emmanuel get well quickly.

  17. morena gambarelli April 16, 2014 Reply

    My best wishes for Emmanuel , is it true ….we cannot afford to loose such good people .
    A Pray for him and for all people living and fighting for Virunga National Park.
    Grazie a tutti

  18. ingeborgh jennen April 16, 2014 Reply

    This is shocking news! I hope Mr de Erode will have a full recovery . I wish him , his family and staffall the best

  19. ADUBI SAMUEL April 16, 2014 Reply


  20. Lemaire Nathalie April 16, 2014 Reply

    Triste nouvelle ! j’ espere un rapide retablissement, Ce park ne suivivra pas sans lui et les gorilles non plus !

  21. Luke Slemeck and the SLEMECK Family April 16, 2014 Reply

    We all wish you a speedy and fast recovery and are so proud to see a son of Africa working so hard for this beautiful land

  22. Wolfgang April 16, 2014 Reply

    Media all around the world are reporting, from leading quality papers to blogs. The senselessness of this attack has brought an international spotlight on the work done at Virunga.

  23. Noelle April 16, 2014 Reply

    I read this last night on the WWF website and my heart just dropped. This is just so sad. Please get well Warden Emmanuel de Merode.

  24. karina feo April 16, 2014 Reply

    Desde aqui URUGUAYdel otro lado del mundo mucha fuerza para el senor Merode y su familia .Su trabajo es maravilloso por estos hermosos animales ‘”‘todo va ir bien””

  25. Paula April 17, 2014 Reply

    Ongehoord wat er gebeurd is. Ik wens u eens vlug herstel en niet opgeven. Jullie leveren fantastisch werk.

  26. Gaspard KISOKI April 17, 2014 Reply

    Cher Emmanuel,
    Nous sommes fiers de toi, fiers de ton travail sur la protection du Park des Virunga.
    Nous sommes fiers de ton courage,
    Nous sommes fiers de ta détermination,
    Nous sommes à tes cotés de toi en ce moment difficile de ta vie,
    Nous sommes de cœur avec ta famille,
    Nous sommes surs que tu vas vaincre cette épreuve,
    Nous t’encourageons.
    Guéris vite et va à la rencontre de tes amis, les gorilles, toute la faune et la flore des Virunga.
    Emmanuel, Prompt guérison

  27. Iris Péron April 17, 2014 Reply

    I wish you a speedy recovery, Emmanuel. My thoughts are with you.

  28. Jean Marie Mafuko April 17, 2014 Reply

    Il est difficile d’apprendre des telles nouvelles!
    Nos pensées positives et prières convergent pour la guérison rapide de Mr Emmanuel.
    Il a toujours aimé les Parcs, et en particulier le parc national des Virunga.
    Courage à toute l’équipe et amis .


  29. mike holding April 17, 2014 Reply

    Terrible news – please someone who has contact with him, pass on my personal best wishes to Emmanuel, and wish him a speedy and full recovery.
    Mike Holding
    AfriScreen Films

  30. Philippe Brunet April 17, 2014 Reply

    Un message de soutien pour une équipe excellente qui fait un travail remarquable. Bon courage et meilleurs voeux de rétablissement de France.

  31. Jim A April 18, 2014 Reply

    My greatest condolences, my prayers are with Emmanuel, Virunga and the Congo.
    I wonder if the attackers knew who they were ambushing.

  32. Deborah Lilly April 18, 2014 Reply

    Stay strong! Getw well soon Emmanuel, Sending prayers and blessings to you, your family and everyone at Virunga National Park.

  33. Luc Blomme April 18, 2014 Reply

    People like you make all the difference in a world led by greed, we wish you a prompt recovery

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  35. Virginie LABAT April 19, 2014 Reply

    Tous mes meilleurs vœux de rétablissement à vous Emmanuel. Ne laissez pas ces hommes continuer à détruire le plus beau continent de notre planète. Soyez remercié de faire partie de ceux qui ont compris que sans réconciliation des populations avec la faune et la flore, rien ne sera possible dans le futur. Je vous envie de vivre là-bas, j’y suis allée il y a bien longtemps; et j’y ai laissé mon cœur et mon âme.
    Celui qui n’a pas vu l’Afrique, ne connaît pas cette Terre !
    Bon courage.
    Pau France

  36. Wolfgang April 20, 2014 Reply

    Dear Emmanuel, supporters of Virunga around the world continue to think of you.

  37. RON ECORD April 20, 2014 Reply


  38. Jodi Domian April 21, 2014 Reply

    Prayers & Thoughts for your Recovery Emmanuel!! And…Best Wishes from Southern California, U.S.

  39. maria jose gonzalez April 21, 2014 Reply

    From Marbella, Spain we want to sent all our best wishes and all our gratitude to Mr. de Merode for all his effort and dedication for the safe of Virunga. Thank you for your generosity to exposse your life in such a difficult place and time. our prays to you and your family for your soon recovery.
    we pray for you and the good people of Virunga park and of course for wonderful animals you care for and witch are always in our hearts
    all the best

    Maria jose Gonzalez Velasco
    Luis Esgonniere

  40. Temmerman Perre April 23, 2014 Reply

    Prompt rétablissement à M. de Merode après cette lâche attaque !

  41. heritier April 24, 2014 Reply

    nous sommes avec vous dans vos luttes. EIN vous soutien

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  43. Toby Glanville May 4, 2014 Reply

    I just watched the documentary Virunga. Emmanuel is a great man. How can we help him and his loyal rangers? The international community needs to get involved. And how can we prevent SOCO from further exploration activities in the park?

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  45. ALFREDO LUQUE January 16, 2015 Reply



  46. Glenn Close February 24, 2015 Reply

    I am sickened by this news and am sending my prayers that M. de Merode will fully recover. He is a courageous man and an inspiring leader. His attack is tragic proof of how effective he and his extraordinary team of rangers has been in standing up to the corruption and violence that threatens Virunga and the magnificent gorillas and elephants and other seriously threatened species that seek refuge there. All of us who want to preserve the magic, majesty and mystery of wild animals and their habitats MUST become faithful supporters of Virunga, the rangers and their families and the initiatives that will stop the violence.

    My heart goes out to Mr. de Merode, his family and his team.
    Glenn Close

  47. Glenn Close February 24, 2015 Reply

    I am obviously behind the news and am glad that Warden de Merode has returned to Virunga! I’m so thankful that the documentary has raised awareness about this special place on our planet and I hope it will continue to mobilize people to donate, visit and do whatever they can to help the park rangers succeed.

  48. brian March 11, 2015 Reply

    An amazing man. He and his Rangers make the world a better place.

  49. Brenda Robinson April 5, 2015 Reply

    May God heal you and protect you.

  50. Carey May 20, 2016 Reply

    What awful news, my heart and thoughts with him and his family, and the other Rangers too. Please update on Emmanuel de Merode. Thank you

  51. rebecca June 26, 2016 Reply

    May God bless and protect you in all further endeavors. I know this happened several years ago.

    Want to thank you and all ofbyour colleagues for your work.
    Because of you I have learned about these precious Mountain Gourillas whom I have fallen in love with! Thank you!

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