Monday, 30 September 2013

World wakes up to threat of wildlife crime at last?

Heads of state come together in call for UN action to combat wildlife crime

September 2013. Efforts to combat illicit wildlife crime have received a massive boost as heads of state and a number of ministers outlined the serious impacts of poaching and illicit wildlife trafficking.

During the most important the year in international politics, governments chose to highlight illicit wildlife trafficking as a major threat to peace and security, the rule of law and global development.

President Ali Bongo of Gabon called for the appointment of a special UN envoy on wildlife crime as well as a UNGA resolution, a move that was supported by the UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, William Hague and the German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, as well as other representatives present such as the Norwegian Minister of Environment.

President Ali Bongo said, "Illicit wildlife crime is no longer a simple environmental problem, it is a transnational crime and a threat to peace and security on our continent".

The President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete highlighted the problem of demand and called for help from the international community to close markets.

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