Thursday, 12 February 2015

South Africa considers viability of legal rhino horn trade

Team will look into technical and strategic aspects of the trade in response to poaching crisis, but ministry says South Africa has not taken a position on the issue

Tuesday 10 February 2015 12.23 GMT

South Africa has appointed a panel of experts to examine the viability of a legal rhino horn trade, the environmental affairs ministry said on Tuesday as poaching of the species spiked to record levels.

The 21-member task team will look into technical and strategic aspects of the trade.

“It is important to emphasise that South Africa has not taken a position on the issue and will not do so until the committee has completed its work and presented its findings,” said the ministry in a statement.

The committee which includes conservationists, scientists and immigration authorities, is tasked with identifying additional measures to curb the illegal killings, including enhanced intelligence to break up syndicates.

It has to submit its report to government before year end.

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