the oil companies are pulling out. one of the most extraordinary repositories of tropical biodiversity has been saved, for the time being. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jun/15/anna-friel-oil-congo. I got to the park headquarters with a military escort in 2000. see Dispatch #3: A Report on the Wildlife of Eastern Congo. Along the same road to park headquarters the park’s director Emmanuel de Merode was ambushed, shot and critically wounded but he is recovering. on April 14, 2014. So it was totally understandable for Anna Friel to stay on the Rwanda side, for which she has been criticized. She didn’t need to risk her life to get the message out. I first visited the park in 1981, and there made my first encounters with elephants and hippos and other herds of big wild animals. which the park, one of the oldest in Africa, it used to be called Prince Albert Park , was crawling with, as I describe in my book In Southern Light. But poaching was rampant, especially for ivory, and all the big animals, especially the hippos and elephants, have been decimated by all the rebel and bandit groups in the park. De Merode and his rangers are doing a noble and heroic and literally life-threatening job.