We, the undersigned civil society organisations from Africa and around the world, denounce the release of genetically modified (GM) “male-sterile” mosquitoes in Burkina Faso. The GM mosquitoes were released in the village of Bana on 1 July 2019 by the Target Malaria research consortium.[i]
The open release is intended to test the infrastructure and systems for future release for as-yet experimental technologies, notably “gene drive” mosquitoes. Target Malaria’s ultimate aim is to make open releases of gene drive mosquitoes, with the aim of reducing the population of Anopheles mosquitoes, which can transmit the parasite that causes malaria. Their claim is that reducing the mosquito population could reduce the risk of malaria transmission and hence disease incidence.