AFRICAN ELEPHANT KEEP DYING AS GREED FOR IVORY PERSISTS
(Posted 02nd August 2016)
Customs and security officials at Kuala Lumpur’s international airport recently seized a ton of ivory from an air cargo warehouse, where the contraband apparently awaited shipment to its final destination in China but also Thailand and Vietnam, all three notorious for illegal ivory imports.
Concealed in a total of 23 packages was the illicit cargo found to have come from Kinshasa / Democratic Republic of Congo and flown on Turkish Airlines via Istanbul to Kuala Lumpur.
While no arrests have been reported as yet from Kuala Lumpur has the information obtained on the shipping documents been used to alert authorities in third countries to help in investigations.
Kenya at the end of April burned 105 tons of ivory and is presently leading the fight against poaching in Africa. Assisted by dozens of other countries will Kenya table motions to ban trade in ivory at the upcoming CITES meeting in Johannesburg but notably have host country South Africa, engulfed in a rhino poaching crisis of the highest order for the past several years and with growing elephant poaching within its parks, formed a mini coalition against a total ban. Inspite of evidence to support claims, that it was the freeing of sales a few years ago by allowing them to dispose of ivory stocks which triggered the massive poaching crisis this decade, has South Africa stubbornly stood in the way of a global anti poaching coalition and the CITES meeting will no doubt see very undiplomatic fights in the auditorium and the corridors prior to Kenya’s proposals being put to the vote.