KWS GET TOUGH WITH POACHERS
News of a shootout between poachers and KWS enforcement personnel was reported overnight from the Kora National Park in Northern Kenya. One poacher reportedly was shot dead in what has been described as a fierce fire fight while others were arrested with AK 47 assault rifles and ammunition in their possession.
Meanwhile were a further 4 suspected poachers arrested in Isiola, also with firearms and ammunition in their possession besides two tusks while near Rumuruti / Laikipia another two suspects were caught with a hunting rifle, eland meat and ivory.
KWS has in recent weeks stepped up their anti poaching operations and arrested and taken to court a large number of suspects, while at the same time several poachers were reportedly killed in shoot outs with rangers and security personnel, now more decisively engaging the gangs. Said a regular source from Nairobi: KWS has declared to make poaching a high cost / low benefit activity and recent news in the media show that anti poaching now really means that when you get caught poaching and start a fire fight, you are likely to pay for it with your life. No amount of money can be worth ones life over a piece of ivory surely. I think KWS now has broad support for their new measures and after several KWS staff lost their lives in the course of doing their duty, they surely no longer need to worry about public opinion not being on their side.
KWS CEO Dr. Julius Kipngtich was also quoted in Kenyan media of having said: This is a warning to all poachers and we will not stop until we wipe them all, a thinly concealed message to the poaching syndicates that their foot soldiers will meet their fate in the field while the traders and financiers too are now under increased police scrutiny and higher fines and longer prison terms are looming for them as the respective laws are undergoing revision. Well done KWS! Watch this space.