Fears that turning muddy route BR-319 into an all-season road will make it an artery for illegal logging and deforestation

Brazil’s environmental authority has granted an initial permit to allow a major highway to be paved through the centre of the Amazon rainforest, the minister of infrastructure said, in a move that threatens to increase deforestation.

On the campaign trail, Brazil’s rightwing president, Jair Bolsonaro, had pledged to repave the road, called BR-319, that would connect the largest Amazon city of Manaus year-round to the rest of Brazil.

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