Rock star Sting has announced that his Virgin Forest Foundation had collected $1.3 million toward the creation of the largest Indian reserve in Brazil.
Sting told reporters he had come to Brazil to meet with the foundation's leaders and to account for donations raised since the group was founded in March 1989.The foundation is seeking to join five National Parks stretching from the central Amazon state of Mato Grosso to the northern Amazon state of Para to form a 30 million-acre Indian reserve.
Sting said the money would also be used for education, health and Indian cultural projects on the reserve.
Foundation president Olimpio Serra said the donations had been deposited in a foreign bank account and would be transferred to Brazil's National Indian Foundation when the government authorized the demarcation of the reserve.
Serra said $250,000 in donations had been blocked in Brazil's Central Bank since March 16, when President Fernando Collor de Mello froze 80 percent of all money in circulation to curb four-digit annual inflation.
The Virgen Forest Foundation was founded after Sting began a world tour in the United States, Japan, Canada and Europe to raise money for the project.